The Good Stuff, Vol. 93

The Good Stuff, Vol. 93

Welcome to “The Good Stuff,” where we highlight positive news and ways that NAED employees and member companies go above and beyond to give back to their communities! If you have some “Good Stuff” that you would like to share with tED, find out how below.

One of City Electric Supply‘s district managers raised nearly $25,000 for the Make-A-Wish Foundation.


EDMONTON, AB — Pawel Szczechura wasn’t always a runner, but he was always up for a challenge. So, when his team at CES began brainstorming ways they could contribute to Make-A-Wish®, he decided to step outside his comfort zone by running a half marathon. Now, he’s a full-fledged competitive runner, going on to participate in some of the toughest races around. In the past five years, Szczechura has run eight races while raising money for Make-A-Wish®, bringing his total to approximately $25,000.

“I said I would run a half marathon, and my friends laughed,” he recollected with a smile. “I’ve never been a runner, and it was the craziest idea I could have. But I’ve proven them wrong.”

Szczechura has participated in the ultramarathons, including the Sinister 7 twice and the Death Race once. He’s already started training for his next three races this summer, and he’ll run them all within a six-week period!

Ultramarathons are categorized as any distance over 42.2 kilometers, or 26.2 miles, and these marathons take place through the Canadian Rockies. Organized by Sinister Sports, the ultramarathons take place in the peak of summer; the routes are treacherous at times, with elevation gains of 3,514 to 6,287 meters and long stretches with no support. Untamed wilderness poses various challenges, and dangerous animals are also expected on the trails. With the remoteness of the course, medical care is not an immediate guarantee, so runners need to be prepared to wait for help if needed.

To pull off his ambitious running goals, Szczechura trains — and trains, and trains. Giving himself about six months to prepare for a big race, he focuses on building endurance rather than speed.

“To be honest, my goal is to finish,” he said. “When I start training, I practice running. Then I add elevation, and every time I think my body is done, I push it for another five to ten minutes. I try to do that at least five times a week.”

Make-A-Wish® was and still is Szczechura’s motivation for learning to run. He typically raises about $5,000 for the charity each time he runs a race.

“I appreciate each donation, whether $5 or $2,000. Every dollar brings a child closer to having their wish granted. I’ve met a few wish kids, and it’s clear that what we’re doing is changing their lives, bringing a little bit of sunshine to a dark time,” said Szczechura.

Discomfort? That becomes a friend in the training process as well.

“You need to let yourself be uncomfortable and try to push through it because that’s what an ultramarathon is like; one minute you’ll feel like you’re on top of the world, and the next you’ll want to give up,” described Szczechura. “You teach your body that you can do way more than you expected.”

When it comes to how CES has supported his efforts and accomplishments, Szczechura describes a true team mentality.

“I’ve been with CES for 17 years, and even with how much we’ve grown, it still feels like a family business. CES does a lot to share whatever donations we receive through hard work, and that just makes it even more fulfilling to work here and see what we can do together,” he said.

Szczechura wants to encourage others, within and outside CES, to pitch in. While he may be competitive in his running and his personal goals, improving the lives of sick children is something he believes is best done together.

“I think sometimes we look around at what others are doing successfully, and we get discouraged. But there are tons of ways to raise money and no bad ideas. Helping others isn’t a race — there’s no losing in it. Every single donation counts, and if we do it one step at a time, we’re going to cover a huge area,” he said.

After all, that’s how every race is run—one step at a time.


Find more “Good Stuff” articles here on

tED wants to know about your “Good Stuff”. If you work with someone who is helping other people, or a group of co-workers that’s creating better outcomes, we want to know about it.

Please send your “Good Stuff” to Editorial & Web Assistant, Marie Jakle at and Online Editor, Nicky Herron at Send us details, names, and photos if you have them.

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