Reading Residents Raise Over $10,000 for Braille Literacy

National Braille Press’ First Braille Across America Challenge Raises over $137,000

10,315 miles run/walked/biked to raise money to support braille literacy

Boston, MA –  National Braille Press (NBP) announced today it had raised over $137,000 in the first-ever Braille Across America run/walk/bike challenge to raise money for braille literacy across the country. Together, over 170 participants from coast-to-coast ran, walked, and biked a total of 10,315 miles from March 17, NBP’s 94 birthday, through April 19, Patriot’s Day in Massachusetts.

“Our original fundraising goal was $26,000 and 2,620 miles, and I am proud to say we far surpassed that at $137,000 and 10,315 miles,” said Brian Mac Donald, president of NBP. “Over the last month, we asked supporters across the United States to come together to each log miles while raising money and awareness for braille literacy.”

Braille Across America teams worked together to raise vital funds needed to continue NBP’s braille literacy programs for blind children and adults. Each member completed a distance of a marathon (26.2 miles) over the last month. Participants logged enough miles to virtually run, walk, or bike coast-to-coast 2.5 times. Runner, walkers, and bicyclers who participated in this challenge were from 32 states: Arizona, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Illinois, Kentucky, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Maine, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, North Carolina, New Jersey, New Mexico, Nevada, New York, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Virginia, Vermont, Washington, and West Virginia. There was also a team who participated from Japan.

“Not only did we exceed our initial goal many times over, which will help us put more books in the hands of blind children and adults, but it also displayed altruism from coast to coast,” said Joseph Quintanilla, NBP VP of Development and Major Gifts, a runner who also led the team More Miles, More Money, More Braille.  “Our Teams pushed themselves so that others can read.  That’s the true meaning of volunteerism, and in recognition of National Volunteer Week, that is why their efforts are so special.”

Top 3 Individual fundraisers

  1. Mary Farish Johnston, Houston, TX Virginia, $12,566
  2. Jessie Richissin, Reading, MA, $7,288
  3. Tom Richissin, Reading, MA, $5,289

Top 3 Team Fundraisers

  1. Let’s Hit the Trail to Run for Braille, $46,355
  2. Team Richissin, $16,121
  3. NBP Staff, $7,199

Top 3 Individual Distance

  1. Rebekah Darnell, Okemos, MI – 517.6 miles
  2. Peter Heilbron, Denver, CO,  Team Colorado– 300.24 miles
  3. Glen Magpiong, Wellesley, MA, Team Super Nice – 297.1 miles

Top 3 Team Distance

  1. TGFF Blazing for Braille, 1,335.3 miles 
  2. Team Super Nice Braille, 815.61 miles
  3. Let’s Hit the Trail to Run for Braille, 813.99 miles

For the complete list of Braille Across America participants please visit:

About National Braille Press

National Braille Press is a non-profit braille publisher and producer of braille products. NBP creates products and programs to support braille literacy in the blind community and to provide access to information that empowers blind people to actively engage in work, family, and community. For more information visit

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