Official newspaper of The University of Texas at Austin

The Daily Texan

Official newspaper of The University of Texas at Austin

The Daily Texan

Official newspaper of The University of Texas at Austin

The Daily Texan

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October 4, 2022

Senior’s nonprofit ‘Gray for Glioblastoma’ raises over $10,000 at Austin Marathon

Mason Rouser
Senior Kate Snedeker cheers for runners in the Austin Marathon running for Snedeker’s charity, Gray for Glioblastoma, on Feb. 18, 2024.

At a booth stationed on Guadalupe Street, youth and community studies senior Kate Snedeker cheered on runners during the 5K, half-marathon and full marathon. Alongside volunteers, she gave out water and motivation to runners, wearing gray sweatshirts with the slogan, “It’s cool to support brain cancer research.”     

Gray for Glioblastoma, a nonprofit organization, raised over $10,000 as an official charity partner for the Austin Marathon on Sunday. Snedeker said the non-profit has donated over $150,000 to cancer centers since its inception a year and a half ago.

Snedeker founded Gray for Glioblastoma after her dad was diagnosed with Glioblastoma Multiforme, the most common, dangerous and aggressive brain tumor. Recognizing a lack of awareness for GBM, Snedeker thought fundraising would bring the community together. 

“Immediately, I (felt) this lack of community and when you Google it, it’s all these super negative statistics,” Snedeker said. “So for a while I knew I wanted to do something about it. I just didn’t know what.”

In October of 2022, she began planning her first event: the Iron Man Gala in Maryland. Snedeker then applied for nonprofit status that December. This required going through the IRS, which took six months to get approved.   

“My overarching goal for the nonprofit is to create a space of community that I didn’t have,” Snedeker said. “I remember it was so hard for me because I wasn’t enjoying talking about it in therapy because my therapist didn’t get it. I knew I needed a support group.” 

Snedeker’s friend, chemical engineering junior Gia Maioriello, encouraged Snedeker to apply to become an official charity in the marathon. 

“I kind of sparked the idea and (Snedeker) took it a little bit further, but I helped guide her through the marathon world of fundraising,” Maioriello said. “It gives the people running a bigger purpose and a reason to keep fighting throughout the race because they’re doing it for something bigger than themselves.”  

The nonprofit, which raised more than its goal, ranked seventh out of 29 charities in the fundraising leaderboards, despite it being their first year as an official charity organization. 

“People didn’t talk about brain cancer the way that they talk about other cancers, so having events that are focused on brain cancer has been really empowering,” said Snedeker.

With 42 registered volunteers, Snedeker said the nonprofit had the highest number of volunteers among all the foundations. In addition, 38 runners signed up and ran for Gray for Glioblastoma. 

“The first eight miles were amazing and it felt so good,” business sophomore Suzy Telle said. “And it was really fun because the crowd was so nice. They would give you water, … high-five you and cheer for you.”

16 brands, including Lesser than Evil, Hiatus and Cabo Bob’s, sponsored Gray for Glioblastoma. The sponsors contributed to gift bags worth around $500 for each runner.  

“It still brings me to my knees when people reach out to me … (because) that was the purpose, that was the overarching goal: to create a space that I didn’t have,” Snedeker said.

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