Empowering girls.
Transforming lives.

i-tri focuses on working with middle-school girls because research shows that the largest drop in self-esteem occurs during early adolescence. 69% of elementary school-aged girls reported being “happy the way I am.” That figure plummets to 29% for high school girls.

i-tri girls learn to believe in themselves, and that can change everything. Along the journey to the finish line of a youth distance triathlon, our girls discover that they are capable, strong and brave. They make connections that show them that while they are unique, they’re definitely not alone. Side by side, with new friends, i-tri girls learn to go inward to find their own strengths and to help others find theirs. i-tri girls are not triathletes. Rather, we use the sport of triathlon to give them a goal that is seemingly impossible, that is overwhelming and scary. And then we give them the physical and mental tools to achieve that goal.

Arms Linked
Arms Linked

i-tri is free.

All equipment, training and transportation are provided for free to every girl because we believe personal circumstances should not hold any girl back from reaching her potential. That makes i-tri different. It isn’t about where you come from. It’s about where you are going. No one has to ask for a scholarship or a favor, and we empower our girls to help themselves, as they participate in fundraising throughout the year.

The Results

How do you prove that a girls empowerment program really works? From the beginning of our program to the triathlon, our most recent group of program graduates showed measurable improvement. Self confidence, self awareness, perseverance and interest in sports all increased significantly!

  • 100% of i-tri girls cross the finish line.
  • 98% of i-tri girls experience growth in one or more Social Emotional Learning (SEL) categories: Positive Identity, Social Capital, and Social Skills.
  • 85% of i-tri girls experience growth in one or more of the categories of Self-Confidence, Goal Orientation, and Social Connections.
  • 90% of i-tri girls demonstrate a significant increase in fitness levels.
  • 100% of i-tri girls demonstrate positive changes in their eating habits. 
In research published in the Journal of Early Adolescence (Vol 39.3), the i-tri program was shown to contribute significantly to the executive function of program participants, which leads to enhanced science scores. Self-control, Cognitive Regulation (controlling distractions) and Metacognition (awareness of one’s own thoughts) all improved and are all characteristics known to increase academic performance.
Theresa Rodin

”If I had had this experience when I was 12, I would have been a different, more confident woman.”

Theresa Rodin

Theresa Roden, i-tri Founder and Chief Visionary Officer

When Theresa Roden completed a triathlon in 2005, the experience was emotionally transformative. Would it be possible, she wondered, to lead a group of adolescent girls on a similar journey to the finish line of a youth distance triathlon? (Her own daughter was 12 at the time.) Inspired by her experience, she decided to bring the benefits of visualization, affirmations, nutrition and the active lifestyle that the sport of triathlon gave her, to girls who could really benefit. With a degree in education, tremendous tenacity, a commitment to her dream, and a supportive hard-working team, Roden launched i-tri in 2010. The original pilot program consisted of 8 Middle School girls at Springs School in East Hampton, NY. Over the years, Theresa’s vision has grown to serve over 1200 girls from 13 school districts and continues to guide us as we prepare for a national expansion!

Our Board

Tisha Dixon-Williams

Rev. Tisha Dixon-Williams

Board Member Reverend Tisha Dixon-Williams is a proud product of Brooklyn, NY. She currently serves as the Sr. Pastor of the First Baptist Church of Bridgehampton in Bridgehampton, NY. She is the first woman to be elected to the office in the 98-year history of the church.

Pastor Tish is passionate about ministry and the work that God has called her to do. She has devoted her ministerial and professional careers to addressing the whole person as it relates to one’s spiritual and emotional well-being.

She is currently studying at the prestigious Samuel DeWitt Proctor School of Theology at Virginia Union University and studied Theology and Ministry at Princeton Theological Seminary. Pastor Williams was also conferred the Doctor of Practical Theology from Wayland Baptist Theological Seminary. In 2016, she became a Fellow of the Princeton Theological Seminary Black Theology and Leadership Institute and currently serves on the WIM (Women in Ministry) committee of Princeton Theological Seminary. She is also a Hampton University PRIME (Pastoral Renewal in Ministry Excellence) Fellow.

As the creator and chief curator of Who’s That Lady? a global women’s ministry movement, she conducts and organizes in-depth bible studies, retreats and conferences that highlight women of The Bible. In July 2019, Rev. Williams in partnership with Restoring Hopes Ministries opened the Who’s That Lady? Academy for all Children a pre-school that educates and supports HIV positive children in Miwani, Kenya.

In addition, her first book, “I See You, Sis: Inspirations from Heroic Women of the Bible Hidden in Plain Sight” was released in October of 2020 and debuted as an Amazon #1 Bestseller. Dr. Williams’ groundbreaking research and scholarship in practical ministry gave birth to “The Emotionally Intelligent Preacher”, “Send in The S.W.O.T.” and most recently, The Praxis Point which is scheduled to launch in January 2023.

Dr. Williams serves on the General Conference Council of the Missionary Baptist Conference, USA, and on the Board of Regents for Wayland Baptist Theological Seminary. Pastor Tish passionately believes that her life is a true reflection of Matthew 6:33 “But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you. She resides in Bridgehampton, NY with her husband Deacon Larry Williams.

Susie Roden

Susie Roden

Board Member Susie is a Breast Cancer Survivor & Thriver, Founder and President of The Coalition for Women’s Cancers, Co-Founder and Executive Director of Lucia’s Angels, Retired Patient Navigator and Community Outreach at Stony Brook Southampton Hospital and a Life Transition Dula. Her Professional and Personal Statement: “One of the bravest things you can do is ask for help.” She is overjoyed to be able to help i-tri, an organization near and dear to her heart!

Mary Alyce Rogers

Mary Alyce Rogers

Board Member Mary Alyce Rogers, LCSW-R has been a member of the East End Community for over 25 years. She is a graduate of Columbia University School of Social Work and has been actively working to make our community better both professionally and personally since her arrival. She is passionate about improving the quality of life for all individuals, families and groups. She is invested in being a community advocate and making our beautiful east end a more equitable place for all to live and thrive. She has been donor, supporter and volunteer for i-tri since its inception and is honored to now support this amazing organization as a board member.

Our Staff

Alyssa Channin

Alyssa Channin

Program Director Alyssa Channin graduated from Long Island University C.W Post with a degree in Marketing. When she started training after college, she couldn’t run a mile without walking; now she runs half marathons. Training has made her stronger physically, but more importantly, mentally. Pushing her body to the limit has given her the mindset that there is no limit. She now knows, and stresses to the i-tri girls, that the only thing that limits us is our fears. Working for i-tri is a dream come true for her. She considers herself lucky that she gets to see the i-tri girls’ transformations both in the classroom and at practice. Watching the girls cross the finish line with big smiles on their faces was one of her proudest moments. During her free time Alyssa enjoys training for her own races, hanging out with friends and family, and practicing her new “i-tri dance moves”.

jenn 2023

Jennifer Casper Fowkes

Development Director Jennifer first joined i-tri in 2019 as Development and Events Manager. After a nearly 2-year detour, she has returned as i-tri’s Development Director. Working with the team at i-tri is a “dream job.” Making sure that the program team has the funding it needs to serve 200 girls every year from Mastic to Montauk is a challenge, but so rewarding. Seeing the alumni of i-tri thrive within the community and in other communities is so uplifting and a testament to the success of the program. Jennifer’s childhood emphasized individual sports over team sports-she grew up skiing in the Catskills and swimming, and was a cheerleader in high school. Having completed her first triathlon at age 50, Jennifer wishes that a program like i-tri had been around when she was in middle school. Jennifer has been a part of the east end community for many years. She’s coached her kids in Little League and kept score at countless basketball games. She is the treasurer of the Old Montauk Athletic Club (OMAC) which sponsors races throughout the East End and gives scholarships to local high school athletes. She loves hiking and swimming and being outside and knows first-hand the mental and physical benefits of physical activity. She is the proud mom of three kids who are outstanding student athletes and all-around good people.

Sharon McCobb

Athletic Director Sharon McCobb is a lifelong athlete who finally found her calling. Ten years ago, she sold her business and became a personal trainer. She trains all age groups but was extremely lucky when she had the chance to get involved in two youth programs. The first was coaching the local swim team where she met some amazing young athletes, and the second was becoming the athletic director for a grant funded program called “healthy kids”. Somewhat like the i-tri program it worked on teaching the kids about physical activity and nutrition, and had an art therapist that did projects with the kids to help with their self-esteem.

She moved on to train the young athletes she had coached on the swim team to do their first triathlon. Most of the kids trained that first year are still with Sharon. Out of that program she had the idea that a youth triathlon was needed in the area. Kids wanted to get involved but were finding that the races were too long. Then along came Theresa Roden with her i-tri program. In order for Theresa’s program to go forward she needed to have the youth distance triathlon in place. Together, Sharon and Theresa organized the race and Theresa launched i-tri. Sharon was thrilled when she was asked to become the trainer for the program.

The i-tri program is the perfect combination of teaching all the things needed to race; physical activity, nutrition and confidence. What makes the program successful is the final goal of performing in a triathlon. A triathlon encompasses three lifelong sports. One can always swim, bike, and/or run!!

Ragan Ingram

Ragan Ingram

Program Leader Ragan earned her degree in Public Health and Community Health Education from Stony Brook University and completed her Health Coach training from The Institute for Integrative Nutrition. Ragan has a great love for fostering wellness in the community. She is passionate about empowering others and helping to improve the physical and mental health of our younger generation and their parents alike.

After working for many years as the Wellness Coordinator at Stony Brook Southampton Hospital’s Ed & Phyllis Davis Wellness Institute, Ragan’s passion led her to promoting Wellness in our local schools with the Wellness Foundation.

If Ragan looks familiar, it’s likely because she grew up in Southampton and now lives there with her husband and three children. She and her family embrace a life of physical activity that includes team sports and excise, but her true passion is getting everyone outside and moving. She believes in the power of play and outdoor exploration and in keeping kids healthy and connected to nature.

Dianey Moreno

Dianey Moreno

Program Leader Dianey Moreno was born, and lived most of her life, in Venezuela before moving to Southampton, NY with her husband and two sons in 2017. Leaving her country was one of the most difficult decisions of her life, however it was a necessary change. She is an elementary school teacher with a Master's in Educational Management. Her experience in the field of education spans 23 years. All of those years she worked in the community where she grew up with an educational project whose goal was to provide education to children without access to one. She started working with that program when it built its first classroom, and continued until it grew into a K-6 school serving over 1000 students.

At this school, Dianey worked in many posts including secretary, teacher, pedagogical coordinator, assistant principal and principal. In her community she is known for being a leader, something she picked up by participating in youth groups when she was growing up.

i-tri reminds her of the times when, as a teenager, she would attend meetings and workshops that other people had prepared for people like her. She later led some of these youth groups as well as support groups for women.

Moving to a new country has been a challenge for her, starting with learning a new language. Not being able to communicate easily has been one of the biggest challenges she has ever faced. Everything is very new to her, but that reminds her of something very important: that we never stop learning new things. We learn new things every day, and if we have to start something over, we go for it! Taking on new challenges takes courage, and she considers herself a very brave and capable person.

Dianey feels blessed with the opportunity to work with i-tri. She never thought she would be able to be part of such a spectacular organization that is so far away from where she has her roots!

Jill Raynor

Jill Raynor

Program Leader Jill Raynor has benefited her whole life from a supportive community, and from older female role models on Eastern Long Island who’ve encouraged her in her athletic pursuits. As a result, she never questioned if she was or could be an athlete, and it is important to her to champion similar opportunities for young girls today. Jill reflects on her excitement for new adventures as being rooted in her physical activity. “It’s what makes me feel good. It’s what makes me confident. It’s what motivates me to eat healthy and drink water. And it’s been the cornerstone of my social network.” She counts herself fortunate to have been able to follow in the early years after Title IX knowing that she could try anything that interested her. This gave her the confidence to go to camps, play sports at the collegiate level, and continue to challenge herself as an adult both recreationally and professionally. 

Jill has made her career in physical activity. She holds a dual BS in Movement & Sports Studies, and Psychology from Springfield College, and a Masters in Physical Education from Hofstra University, as well as extensive continuing education certifications from the American Red Cross. She earned tenure as a Physical Education Teacher, has taught swimming and biking for many years. She has completed numerous half marathons and serves on the volunteer boards of both the Water Mill Community Club and Southampton Town Aquatics and Recreation.

Natalie Sisco

Natalie Sisco

Program Leader Natalie Sisco was an elementary educator for 10 years before becoming a part of i-tri. In 2008, she traveled to Berlin, Germany where she taught 3rd grade at an International school for 2 years. While overseas, she completed her first marathon and has been an avid runner ever since.

Natalie is so excited to be a Program Leader for i-tri! She loves seeing the girls reach their potential through hard work and determination.

She lives in Southampton with her husband Ken, stepson Jem and son Ryan.

During her free time, Natalie loves going to the beach with her family.

Kelly Crowley

Kelly Crowley

Coach Kelly Crowley is a practicing occupational therapist on the East end of Long Island, working mainly with the pediatric population in schools, home, and clinic. Kelly graduated from the University of Scranton with a masters of science in Occupational Therapy, and with additional academic pursuits in philosophy studies. Kelly has been a runner since she ran her first 5k race at the age of 12, but did not join any conventional running team or group until she was out of college. Kelly instead participated in basketball, soccer, and softball throughout her high school years, but always enjoyed going on a run with her mom between sports seasons.

After moving back home after Scranton, Kelly sought out a group of runners that she could work out with, and found a group of ladies (and a few men) who would meet up and do track work-outs. This is where Kelly met i-tri's athletic director, Sharon McCobb and learned about i-tri. Kelly's interest in helping youth find their personal physical outlets and also work on positive self-talk, body image, and other challenges facing youth today is why Kelly is so excited to join the iTri team. Kelly hopes to foster an environment where running isn't the punishment, but something people can learn about themselves from, and maybe during which have a few good conversations with friends along the way.

Diane O’Donnell

Diane O’Donnell

Coach Diane O’Donnell was born in New York, New York, but has lived on the East End of Long Island since she was 7 years old. She loves i-tri, because when she spends time with these girls she sees herself. Diane did not participate in any organized athletics, other than gym class, until she was 27 years old. She was encouraged to run by her husband, Bill, who was a lifelong runner, but never thought she would come to enjoy running and other sports as much as she has.

Diane is married and a mother of four; three girls and one boy, all grown and out of the house. The children grew up as athletes, and continue to exercise, and sometimes compete. This is one of her proudest accomplishments: her children.

In Diane’s own athletic career, some highlights are running 14 marathons, including 6 NYC Marathons, 2 Boston Marathons, with a PR of 3:29:26 set at NYC in 1991, as a masters athlete. She has run numerous triathlons, beginning in 1983 with the then Mighty Hamptons, 1.5 mile swim, 25 mile bike, 10 mile run. Since then Diane has lost count of the number of races she’s participated in, but also did two Half-Ironman triathlons, as well as off road triathlon, duathlon, running, orienteering and adventure races.

At present, she coaches girls’ running at East Hampton High School, a position she has held for 24 years. Some of her proudest moments come when meeting girls she hasn’t seen since they graduated high school who come back to say they are still running. This is a lifetime accomplishment.

Diane is also a volunteer EMT-CC, with the East Hampton Village Ambulance.

Kelly Roesel

Coach Kelly Roesel has been teaching swimming at all levels for the past 28 years and has taught high school science/special education on the East End for the past 22 years. This past year she was instrumental in the creation of our “Science of Triathlon Curriculum.” Before having children, she was also the assistant coach for the girls Varsity track team where she teaches.

While a lifelong runner and swimmer, Kelly began her triathlon career in 2012 competing in the Turbo Tri, a past fundraiser for the i-tri program. She is currently training to compete in her first half Ironman this upcoming tri season.

Hailey P. London

Hailey P. London

Nutritionist Hailey P. London MS, RD, The Nutrition Dragon, provides inventive workshops for families, schools and children on making healthy food choices; simply, easily and affordably. In addition, she is the Health and Wellness Educator at Ross School in East Hampton NY, assisting in the develop one of the most innovative and celebrated local and organic school food program in the world. The Nutrition Dragon, also provides gardening, nutrition and culinary education for Project Most’s, Springs Seedlings Program at Springs School and the i-tri Girls inspirational Triathlon program, now in ten local schools. Hailey London (Nutrition Dragon) is a contributing author and childhood nutrition expert for “Lunch Lessons: Changing the Way We Feed Our Children” with world renowned school lunch expert, Ann Cooper, as well as a former research author for Joy Bauer, globally recognized celebrity Dietitian. She has received awards from The NY State Assembly for bridging the gap between schools and farms and for excellence in Nutrition Education.

Shauna St Hill

Shauna St Hill

Finance and Operations Manager Shauna St Hill is an Office Assistant at i-tri with experience in the corporate world as well as the nonprofit sector serving in various operational and administrative roles. Shauna plays a critical role in streamlining and supporting i-tri’s day-to-day financial, organizational and development efforts. From her High School days as a competitive track & field team member, running remains a passion for Shauna. In her professional role, Shauna enjoys being part of a team and enjoys applying technology to improve and enable the organization.

Samantha Rothberg

Program Assistant Samantha holds an undergraduate degree in Art History and Religious Studies from Bates College (Lewiston, Maine) and a master's degree in Art History from The Courtauld Institute (University of London). After returning to New York and working at Sotheby’s Auction House, she realized that the art world wasn’t for her. In 2015 she became a certified personal trainer, eventually becoming a top performing fitness and lifestyle management coach and mentor at Equinox Tribeca. She currently runs her own personal training business. She has competed in powerlifting, and loves to teach women the importance of lifting heavy and feeling strong in body and spirit. Samantha became involved with triathlon on a whim, a dare from a client, after taking some swim lessons in 2019 to learn to swim for fitness. Her first triathlon was a disaster, but she was blown away by the kindness and warmth of the triathlon community. She was instantly hooked and has since competed in dozens of multisport events. She feels fortunate to live in Southampton and to have unrestricted access to the open water. As a swim coach, her favorite thing is to see the i-tri girls gain confidence in the pool and translate that to the open water, a necessary skill for living on Long Island. Of all the hats she wears, coaching the i-tri girls and seeing them grow stronger, physically and emotionally, is her favorite. Samantha is a Certified Strength and Conditioning Coach, USAT Certified Triathlon Coach, and Precision Nutrition 2 Coach and has been published in Bustle and Runner’s World. She's an advocate for inclusivity in triathlon through her role on the USA Triathlon Foundation Ambassadors' leadership committee. Samantha is on Team USA (age group) and is excited to represent the USA at the Multisport World Championships in Australia in 2024.

Brienne Ahearn

Brienne Ahearn

Grant Writer Brienne is a non-profit professional whose career has focused on social and educational justice and empowerment. As a director, manager, organizer and educator, Brienne has developed programs, raised funds, and advocated for vulnerable populations in refugee resettlement organizations, a community development corporation, and grassroots youth development organizations in New York City, Chicago, and here on the East End. She's a native of Southampton, and currently lives with her husband, Eric, and spirited 20-month-old son, Mac, in Riverhead. In her free time, she loves swimming, doing yoga, reading, and volunteering at a community garden. She's thrilled to join the i-tri team as a grant writer and continue her work of investing in youth and contributing to positive social change in her community.

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