When Will Sebern isn’t running Layton Boulevard West Neighbors, a community development organization in southwest Milwaukee, he’s running marathons.
In 2011, Sebern, executive director of Layton Boulevard West Neighbors, decided to run the Milwaukee Lakefront Marathon, a 26.2-mile race along Lake Michigan that starts in Grafton and ends at Veterans Park in downtown Milwaukee.
He’d never been consistently involved in a particular sport, but running a marathon was something he wanted to try. Now, it’s a passion.
“There were two people who inspired me,” Sebern said. “One was my sister. She ran the Boston Marathon when she was at school out there. The (other) was a friend who was doing the Marine Corps Marathon in Washington, D.C., and asked friends to come out and watch. It was my first time in a marathon environment … witnessing all the excitement. I thought this was something I definitely wanted to try sooner rather than later.”
Sebern has run in several marathons and half-marathons since, including the Portland Marathon in Oregon, the Humboldt Redwoods Marathon in California, and a second shot at the Lakefront Marathon.
He achieved a personal best running time, 4:08:09, at the Portland Marathon in 2014. That year, the median marathon time for runners in the U.S. was 4:19:27, according to Running USA, a nonprofit organization dedicated to the sport.
“There are better runners out there,” Sebern said. “It’s more of a competition with myself. It’s not the world’s fastest time, but I’m proud of it because it’s my fastest time.”