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Friday, October 03, 2008

October 1, 2008—Boulder-based climber and The North Face Athlete announced as semi-finalist for Inspiring Soles

The North Face athlete and Boulder resident Heidi Wirtz, co-founder of the nonprofit Girls Education International (GEI), was recently notified that she is one of five semifinalists for the Inspiring Soles Award. Created by Crocs. Inc and Outside Magazine, the Inspiring Soles Award celebrates athletes who have dedicated their lives to shattering boundaries and raising awareness for meaningful causes. Wirtz has worked tirelessly for the past two years on fundraising and implementing projects for GEI, and over the years she has regularly volunteered for HERA Climb4Life events and the Khumbu Climbing School, and she has raised money for the dZi Foundation.
As a semifinalist, Wirtz will receive $5,000 to donate to the charity of her choice plus $500 worth of Crocs merchandise.
“This is really exciting,” said Wirtz of the award. “The $5,000 will pay for Girls Education International’s Liberia program through spring of 2010.” Implemented as GEI’s first major project, the Liberia Scholarship Program provides $71 per year to 47 girls in the mountainous regions of Liberia so they can pay their school fees.
“Now we can focus our fundraising efforts on expanding that program and raising funds for the other projects we are working on,” Wirtz added. Wirtz’s next major fundraiser will at the b Side Lounge in Boulder on October 9.
The overall winner of the Inspiring Soles award, to be announced later this year, will receive a $25,000 donation for a charity, a Crocs shopping spree, a trip to Santa Monica, a full-page profile in Outside Magazine and a PSA ad for their charity.
Girls Education International seeks to raise awareness and funds to help educate women and girls in impoverished areas throughout the world, and will particularly support an ongoing girls scholarship program in Liberia and a new project in northern Pakistan. For more information, please visit:
For more information, please contact Lizzy Scully at 303-903-2768 or To contact Heidi Wirtz directly, please call 303-908-7795 or email

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