An interview with Tyler Williams Green, CEO and founder of The Outrunners
Tyler Williams Green is CEO and founder of The Outrunners, a Hackney-based charity and running club where everyone is included and no one is left behind. Tyler recently worked alongside Run Dem Crew to build an incredible atmosphere of joy and motivation at Mile 21 of the 2022 TCS London Marathon.
Growing up, who was your sporting hero?
I really admired Flo-Jo (Florence Griffith Joyner), a female African-American sprinter who was always at the top of her game and I just loved what she was doing. She came from quite a big family – one of 11 siblings – and it couldn’t have been easy, especially as she grew up mostly with boys.
During her career she really set herself apart by being quite feminine and bringing her distinct style to what she did. She was known for her running outfits as much as her medals and her records. That’s something really important to me and a big part of what we’re doing with The Outrunners – using design to create a brand that people can align with and identify us with.
Flo-Jo ran with her incredible long nails and accessorised her running outfits. She brought Black culture to the track and wasn’t ever diluting herself, which is so important, especially back when she was at the peak of her career in the late 1980s.
What impact did Flo-Jo have on you?
I appreciate that she was a great athlete, but for me it was more about seeing a person of colour doing what they do so well in their true, authentic way. She was a really important person in terms of that – not worrying about what other people thought.
Did you have any other sporting heroes growing up?
My dad. He was a personal trainer when I was a child and he definitely got me thinking about physical activity from a young age.
Who inspires you now?
What keeps me moving is The Outrunners community – the volunteers who turn up every day to work with young people, people who want to give back to the local community in Hackney. Those people inspire me and keep me motivated. And of course, the young people, some as young as eight years old who have already got four medals from competing in various races. My community inspires me.