Q&A with Melissa Belk - GOTR Coach, Donor, and SoleMate


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Nancy Daly Recognized with National & Local Volunteer Awards

Nancy Daly and The Hat Ladies sewing custom hats at a Girls on the Run 5K

Long-time Girls on the Run of South Central Wisconsin volunteer Nancy Daly has been recognized by Girls on the Run International with their Remarkable Volunteer Award, a national volunteer recognition program that acknowledges the inspirational impact volunteers have on Girls on the Run. Nancy was selected from a large pool of nominations sent from Girls on the Run councils across the country. Additionally, Nancy was recently recognized by Madison’s Downtown Rotary Club with their Senior Service Award.

In addition to serving on Girls on the Run’s Board of Directors from 2009-2013, Nancy mobilized her team of “Hat Ladies” to sew and donate custom fleece winter hats for the Council’s Fall 2009 season. That November, the “Hat Ladies” sewed hats for all 192 GOTR girls to wear at their 5K. The colorful matching hats were an instant hit with GOTR families and kids, and Nancy and her “Hat Ladies” have never looked back. As of Fall 2023, Nancy’s Hat Ladies have now sewn and donated 8,837 fleece hats for every Fall season GOTR participant since their initial donation in 2009.

In 2021, Nancy connected another part of her remarkable network to Girls on the Run. Nancy served on the Service Committee for a social and charitable group called “Who’s New in Madison” and nominated Girls on the Run to be the organization’s charitable beneficiary for their 2021-2022 service year. During that year, the organization’s 500+ members provided financial support and hundreds of hours of volunteer service to Girls on the Run.

Joan Collins, long-time supporter of Girls on the Run and member of Who’s New in Madison shared the following reflection about Nancy’s Rotary Club Senior Service Award, “Hats off to Nancy! She received roaring applause in the middle of the presentation at the Downtown Rotary meeting when it was announced that she and the Hat Ladies have made and given away over 100,000 hats and she received a much-deserved standing ovation.”

In addition to her support of Girls on the Run, Nancy Daly and her Hat Ladies have supported area schools, Head Start, and other non-profit organizations through donations of their hand-sewn fleece hats. Their recognizable pattern and colorful fabrics can be seen keeping kids warm all winter long throughout South-Central Wisconsin.


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