“Marathon Woman” Katherine Switzer will speak at Black Hills State University Thursday, Oct. 27 in the Clare and Josef Meier Recital Hall with two identical presentations at 9:30 a.m. and at 11 a.m.

Switzer is an iconic athlete, author, businesswoman, and Emmy-Award winning commentator. Her legendary tale began in 1967 when she was the first female to enter and race in the Boston Marathon. As her bestselling book Marathon Woman explains, an uproar was created when a race official tried to physically push her from the race. The photos of this incident have now become one of Time-Life’s “100 Photos that Changed the World.”

During a time when the 26.2 mile marathons were male-dominated, Switzer’s entrance and incident in the Boston Marathon spread inspiration and challenged the myth about women’s physical limitations. This event changed her life as well as many women and men everywhere. Switzer took this opportunity to dedicate her career to creating sports equality for women. She went on to create programs in 27 countries for over one million women, drove the women’s marathon into the Olympic Games, and has run 36 marathons as a world-class athlete. After winning the 1974 New York City Marathon with her best time of 2:51:33, Switzer finished second in the 1975 legendary Boston Marathon.

Switzer continues to work as a commentator of marathons including the Olympics and is a frequent presenter at such events. In addition to her book Marathon Woman, Switzer is also the author of Running and Walking for Women Over 40 and co-author of 26.2 Marathon Stories. As a runner of 50 years, she continues to race in marathons across the world. Switzer’s success was recognized this month with her induction into the National Women’s Hall of Fame.

The event is sponsored by the BHSU School of Business and is free and open to the public.