Members of the Take-Two Interactive Software team gather for a photo prior to the 2012 J.P. Morgan Corporate Challenge in Central Park.
Take-Two's team in New York attracts
wide range of participants
NEW YORK, June 10, 2013 — When the J.P. Morgan Corporate Challenge returns to Central Park this Wednesday night for the 37th consecutive year, one of those participating will be Lisa Wallace, an employee of Take-Two Interactive Software, Inc.
Wallace is a perfect illustration of why an idea hatched in 1977 keeps working today. She finds the Corporate Challenge to be the perfect motivation for a fitness regimen and an opportunity to spend some out-of-the-office time with colleagues.
"I've done the past three Corporate Challenge races with Take-Two," said Wallace. "This is my one race of the year."
For Wallace and thousands of others for whom running events are not a regular part of their calendars, the J.P. Morgan Corporate Challenge fills several important roles.
"My inspiration was to get in better shape," said Wallace of her first venture into trying the Corporate Challenge. "I was pretty active at the gym but nothing much outside of that. My preferred methods of working out were cycling and spin classes, and I really had never even been on a treadmill when I ran my first race.
"I had no idea you had to practice and running a 5K was something that you built up to," she added. "I had not run since high school. My first race was such a shock to my system and I almost felt like crying when I crossed the finish line. I think my time was around 45 minutes and I could barely walk for the next couple of days. Although my timing has only gotten slightly better in the couple of races I have done since then, I do run on the treadmill building up to race day now so I don't suffer in the days following."
In addition to the chance to participate with colleagues in a healthy activity, the Corporate Challenge also gives employees like Wallace the opportunity to share a unique out-of-the-office experience.
Take-Two CEO Strauss Zelnick appeared on the cover of Men's Fitness magazine in 2008.
That team-bonding experience also was something creators of the original Corporate Challenge envisioned, although certainly not to the level it has reached, with many companies partying long after the race has finished at corporate tents in Central Park. It is, however, an important aspect of the Corporate Challenge to participants like Wallace and for companies such as Take-Two.
Headquartered in New York City, Take-Two Interactive Software, Inc., is a leading developer, marketer and publisher of interactive entertainment for consumers around the globe. Its lists of games include Grand Theft Auto V, which features "the largest and most thriving game-world we have ever created." And events like the Corporate Challenge help bring the employees of the fast-paced company closer together.
"We have a wide range of employees who have participated (in the Corporate Challenge), including our CEO Strauss Zelnick, who graced the cover of Men's Fitness in 2008 and has participated in the past, which has been motivating to other employees," said company captain Erica Stokes. "Senior Executives Chris Casazza and Luc Gregoire also run."
All three are again on the Take-Two roster for this year's race on Wednesday night.
"We prepare throughout the day by handing out healthy snacks to participants and will often meet for food and drink after the race," said Stokes, who is in her first year as company captain and is sharing the duties with Human Resources Assistant Cassandra Schaffa. "I've participated at other companies in the past, and it's a great event to have colleagues get together outside of the office engaging in healthy exercise.
"It's very exciting to be a part of something so large!" she added. "People love the camaraderie and fun time we have."
So this year, when Lisa Wallace completes her annual 3.5-mile run through Central Park, she'll have a lot to enjoy.