Margaux is not a professional athlete.
She is persistent, consistent and willing to push past goals she sets for herself.
And, she is making a difference doing what she loves – riding bike.
Last year, she chose to leverage her skills, drive and passion to do good. She broke a record, made an impact, and raised $10,000 for Grow Cycling Foundation – and more by way of a butterfly effect.
The journey began on January 1, 2020 when Margaux Elliott, Giro’s Apparel Product Manager & Developer, set a goal to climb a million feet on her mountain bike. Margaux completed the feat on Dec. 20, 2020, becoming the first woman to achieve this zealous milestone.
That could have been the end of this story.
However, when the 2020 social justice movement surfaced about halfway through Margaux’s venture, she decided she wanted her goal to be bigger than her own achievement.
She discovered Grow Cycling Foundation, an organization that launched in August 2020, with the goal to promote education, access and opportunities to increase diversity and inclusion in cycling. The organization goes beyond collecting donations. Their motto is bigger, which is to build a community capable of solving problems and sustaining long-term change.
“Community can lead to opportunity,” said Eliot Jackson, Chairman/Co-Founder of Grow Cycling Foundation. “The more people we can reach, the more people we can get into the sport, the more education and access – whether its jobs, competitive events, or just carpooling to an event – the better.”
Through her biking and advocacy, Margaux raised $10,000 for Grow Cycling Foundation – a feat in and of itself.
“Margaux’s story is this – she is a person with a full-time job, doing something nobody has ever done. It really goes to show you don’t have to be some super athlete or quit your job to do something special,” Jackson said.
Margaux’s ride was compared to “Everesting” more than 34 times… or riding the complete Tour de France route every other month… on dirt!
“I rode about five days a week. This added up to 20-24 hours per week and amounted to 19,000-25,000 feet climbed per week. It was like having a part time job!” Margaux said.
Margaux says she underestimated the power of having a goal.
“Having a reason got me out the door. Without it, I would not have gone on as many rides. Once I was out the door, I was so happy to be out riding. I stuck to my plan and learned I was capable of doing more than I thought each day.”
Little did she know, her actions would bring more diversity to the cycling community than anticipated. It wasn’t long before Margaux’s story got the attention of her company’s leadership. To support its employee and partner with an organization that aligns with Vista Outdoor’s mission, the company is now supporting the Grow Cycling Foundation through financial contributions and listings on their newly created jobs board. The jobs board was created to provide opportunities to underrepresented groups who historically don’t know the prospects exist.
“The purpose of our job board is to broaden talents in the industry and expand the overall hiring base to benefit people of all ethnicities, genders, and backgrounds,” Jackson explained. “Supporting our job board is a great way for Bell, Giro and Vista Outdoor to share the responsibility and actively work in our community.”
Looking for more?
In her “Reasons” video, Margaux shares her idea, how the goal challenged her and how she helped bring diversity to the cycling community.