Press Release— Chicago, Illinois
Chicago Women’s Elite Cycling (CWEC) is proud to announce it is now officially a public charity with tax-exempt status under Section 501(c)(3) of the United States Internal Revenue Code. Contributions donated to Chicago Women’s Elite Cycling are fully tax-deductible retroactive to the founding of the organization on January 5, 2015. Chicago Women’s Elite Cycling is also now eligible to apply for government and foundation grants, which will further broaden and deepen its access to resources while strengthening its ability to serve the Chicago bike racing community.
"Obtaining 501(c)(3) status is a major milestone for Chicago Women’s Elite Cycling," remarked Co-Founder and President Cathy Frampton. "This opens many doors for us to expand fundraising activities and fully realize our goals as a charitable organization which will in turn help elevate women’s competitive cycling in the Chicago region not only for the current generation of riders, but also for a future generation seeking additional competitive cycling opportunities or added confidence to help them become stronger riders in the future.”
Daphne Karagianis, co-founder and team captain, explains, “The local women’s racing scene in Chicago is dynamic and exciting. To maintain this energy and continue to grow the quantity and quality of racers, CWEC riders will compete on their local Chicago teams, mentoring their teammates, and encouraging other local racers to excel. CWEC will also partner with race teams and promoters to co-host development clinics and training opportunities. For nationally recognized races, CWEC riders will join forces in representing Chicago, and compete as a composite team, which is more effective than racing individually. We aim to provide that professional experience for our riders and give them the tools for success in racing with the PRO peloton.”
Supporting its development mission, Chicago Women’s Elite Cycling has created a series of seminars, on-the-bike clinics, and training rides to prepare interested cyclists with the skills necessary to be a more confident and effective bike racers. For those women who meet the CWEC Rider criteria and are selected to represent CWEC in regional and national events, the riders enjoy the camaraderie of team-based coaching discussions, teammates for training efforts, cost savings for registration, travel, housing, and race-day support otherwise not available when competing at the elite level as an independent rider. The riders also gain critical race and training experience from diverse opportunities provided to them to interact with experienced racing professionals. In 2015, CWEC hosted 7 formal clinics for over 145 participants and with a blend of elite women racers from 5 local race teams, as well as participated in 24 races capturing 6 professional podium finishes. Building on feedback from the local race team leadership, the 2016 program will further advance the topics initiated in 2015 and provide additional competitive opportunities to elite racers.