The BP MS 150 is a weekend-long fundraising bike ride that kicks off in Houston, finishes in Austin and benefits the National Multiple Sclerosis Society. The ride is one of many held across the country that make up the MS Bike Series, the largest fundraising cycling series in the world.
This year marked Protiviti Houston’s 15th consecutive year participating in the ride. And it was number 18 for Protiviti Houston alum Paul Pettit, who is now Executive Director at Revenew International. Paul started the corporate team in Protiviti’s first year and continued as team captain until leaving the organization in late 2016. This year, he participated as an alumni.
The team is usually a mix of employees, family and friends; each year, a different client team partners with Protiviti. This year’s client team joined with 20 riders.
“It’s a great opportunity to socialize with clients in a different venue, get some exercise and have fun with colleagues,” Paul says. But Paul is quick to note that, at the end of the day, the event is really about raising funds for multiple sclerosis, a disease that affects both the young and the old and for which there is no cure yet.
Riders must raise a minimum of $400 to participate and many continue to raise funds in the weeks following the race, whether it’s through ongoing donations or matching funds. The 26-rider Protiviti team has already raised $37,000 this year, but expect that number to grow before fundraising closes in July.
“We really push our riders to raise as much as they can beyond the minimum. Over the years, we’ve gotten better at increasing that amount. Last year, we raised over $50K!” says Paul.
For Protiviti Houston, raising funds for multiple sclerosis research and support is especially meaningful because of the personal connections. A current Protiviti employee rides every year in honor of a family member with the disease. While Paul was at Protiviti, one of his executive assistants had MS. He, and others in the office, rode in her honor for a few years. And once, she even joined the team as a rider herself!
As for future BP MS 150 rides, Paul hopes that Protiviti Houston continues with the legacy he has left behind: “I will probably start a new team with my new company next year and we may partner with Protiviti – who knows!”
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