Track World Record Holder Seeks to Raise $500,000 through Innovative Website

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Unique website gives sponsors visibility and a piece of the dream.

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Janelle Billingslea, Junior Track & Field World Record Holder in the 500m, announced today the launch of her innovative fundraising website By offering sponsors the opportunity to purchase space on the website, Billingslea hopes to raise $500,000 to finance the years of elite-level training she will need in order to progress in the Track and Field sport.

“As contributing sponsors, companies can put their logos in the space they purchase, or another message about their company, and have a link to their own website too,” explains Billingslea. “They gain visibility for their company, positive publicity for their role in supporting athletes, and the satisfaction of knowing exactly where their donation is going and how it will be used. When I am asked about my sponsors, their name will be mentioned, so they’ll receive added publicity. Plus they can track my progress, and when I succeed, they’ll know they played an important role in that success.”

It’s estimated that an elite athlete’s training can cost anywhere from a low of $40,000 per year to $100,000 or more, depending on a number of factors. Coaching fees account for a large portion of the cost. Hiring a local high school coach would, of course, cost much less than hiring a well-known national coach. Travel to meets, many of which are in international venues, is also a big part of the cost. Then there are the fees associated with the consultation of Nutritionists and other professionals.

If she achieves her financial goal of $500,000, Billingslea will be able to finance five or more years of elite-level training -- free from the burden of training costs that often overwhelm promising athletes.

About Janelle Billingslea

Originally from Juneau, Alaska, Billingslea was a basketball player who hoped to go to college on a basketball scholarship. She started running in ninth grade when friends -- marveling at how fast she ran on the court -- asked her to help out the track team. Although the track season in Alaska was a short six weeks, Billingslea made it to the State Championships that first year, and her love of track began. Eventually she moved to Washington, DC to live with her grandfather and take advantage of the milder weather and longer track season. She then competed in the sport of track for Calvin Coolidge High School.

So far in her career, Billingslea has earned 10 State Championships, 20 Conference Championships, three All American titles, four Rookie of the Year titles, and the distinction of being named Gatorade Player of the Year in Track and Field. In addition to being the Junior World Record Holder in the 500m, Billingslea has been ranked among the Top 20 in the world for 500m as well.

Her honors don’t end on the track, however. Billingslea has achieved numerous academic honors including Scholar Athlete, Academic All-Star, Most Valuable Academic Award, Highest GPA, and many more. She earned her B.A. degree in Political Science and Psychology from Georgetown University.

Unfortunately, a severe injury to her left Achilles tendon sidelined Billingslea for a time. While some would have ended their careers after the discouragement of such a blow, Billingslea always knew she’d be back. And she is back -- better than ever -- training on her own and ready to pick up the pace.

“Many track athletes don’t really hit their stride until their late twenties and thirties, when their bodies have matured and are in top physical condition,” explains Billingslea. “I’m going to be one of those athletes. Even though I’ve accomplished a lot already, I still have many goals left to achieve, and I’m not going to stop until I reach them.”

Thinking of how athletes wear athletic apparel sporting the logos and names of their sponsors, Billingslea hit upon the idea of selling space on her website as an easy way for sponsors to get involved. She hired a programmer to help put her ground-breaking plan into action. The result is an inviting, easily navigable website packed with information on Billingslea -- her past and her future -- plus the goal of the site, how to become a sponsor, rules of sponsorship, and how it all works.

Sponsorship starts at just $110 for a 125x100 pixel box, so even individuals can purchase space and be a part of helping Billingslea to reach her goals. Sponsors who wish to remain anonymous can also make donations.

For more information, contact Janelle Billingslea at (301) 627-5869.


Janelle Billingslea


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