Founder and Executive Director
Nicoletta Nerangis, LMSW, is the Founder and Executive Director of Run4Fun, a non-profit organization dedicated to empowering the mental health and socio-emotional wellness of children and young people through the power of running and play. Nicoletta designed the evidence-based Run4Fun trauma-informed socio-emotional curriculum and today serves over 2,000 young people each year in New York City and Kefalonia, Greece. Nicoletta’s work has spanned over 30 years with young people as a social worker, crisis counselor, teacher and coach, receiving awards for her work with children and individuals with disabilities. Nicoletta’s son, Panagiotis, whose love of running was hampered by struggles with anxiety and the pressures of competition, inspired her to found Run4Fun. He expressed that he would join a running program if she started one; Run4Fun was born with her son and his six friends. As a mental health and child advocate, Nicoletta has spoken to community organizations, legislators and media outlets such as USA Today, BBC Sport, and VOA Sonny Side of Sports. As a marathon runner, her life’s mission is to spread the powerful and healing impact of physical activity on children’s mental health and sense of empowerment. Nicoletta, a trained opera singer, can be heard singing at the start of running races that she runs together with her son, youth, and communities. Nicoletta firmly believes that children generate powerful ideas that can truly change the world.