Editor's note: Stephen Mears, chief executive of the 2012 Canton Marathon and Hall of Fame City Challenge, responded to Dick's letter to the editor here.
The city of North Canton announced this past week it has not yet agreed to participate in the 2013 Hall of Fame City Challenge, previously called the Canton Marathon.
North Canton hasn't been fully reimbursed for police and fire services, which totaled nearly $10,000, and city officials said they'd like to be repaid and paid upfront for the 2013 race before signing on again.
Now, Julie Dick, president of Canton Marathon, LLC wishes to clear up any questions community members may have about the upcoming race and its affiliation with Canton Marathon, LLC.
President Canton Marathon, LLC
January 3, 2012
On behalf of Canton Marathon, LLC, the company that produced the inaugural Canton Marathon in 2012, I would like to provide information about the company and answer questions about a new event recently announced by Stephen Mears.
Canton Marathon, LLC has no affiliation with the new event. The new event announced by Stephen Mears is NOT the Canton Marathon. The Canton Marathon is scheduled for June 16, 2013.
The inaugural Canton Marathon was a success and Canton Marathon, LLC financials show a profit.
However, when the company finances were investigated, it was discovered that Stephen Mears and his company StrategyONE, Inc. had borrowed over $100,000 from the company. As a result, Canton Marathon, LLC could not pay all of its bills to vendors and to the City of Canton and City of North Canton.
Mr. Mears and his company StrategyONE, Inc. have promised to pay the money back and have signed a promissory note to Canton Marathon, LLC for $150,000. Mr. Mears and StrategyONE, Inc. recently began making monthly payments and accordingly, Canton Marathon, LLC has been able to make partial payments to those it owes.
I want to make this perfectly clear. The only reason Canton Marathon, LLC was unable to pay its bills on time is because Stephen Mears and his company StrategyONE, Inc. borrowed over $100,000 from it.
I do not believe it is prudent or appropriate to pay last year’s bills with new registrations or new sponsorship funds, especially when Mr. Mears and his company StrategyONE, Inc. owe so much money to Canton Marathon, LLC.
It saddens me greatly to have produced such a successful event and not be able to pay the bills. Unfortunately, I put my trust and confidence in Mr. Mears and I was shocked to discover the amount of funds that he borrowed from the company. I sincerely hope that Mr. Mears and his company StrategyONE, Inc. will do the right thing and continue to pay back all of the money they owe to Canton Marathon, LLC so that it can pay its bills and move forward with the second Canton Marathon.
While the 2013 dates for the Canton Marathon and its events have been announced, the Canton Marathon will move forward when Mr. Mears and his company fulfill their obligations to Canton Marathon, LLC.
I continue to be a partner with Mr. Mears in Canton Marathon, LLC. I have resigned from the non-profit charity Canton Marathon, Inc.
Questions about the 2013 Canton Marathon or Canton Marathon, LLC can be directed to Julia Dick at 330-546-6703 or by email to CantonMarathon@gmail.com.