Medical, legal and business leaders co-chair Freed to Run 4.0

The annual Tallahassee-to-Jacksonville six-marathon series supports civil legal aid for pediatric patients.

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It collected more than $1 million in its first three years, and Jacksonville Area Legal Aid’s largest annual event, Freed to Run, is moving toward its $2.25 million goal.

Freed to Run 4.0 co-chairs are Dr. Nayla Osman-Chahlavi, a pediatrician at Village Pediatrics; Dr. Ali Chahlavi, a neurosurgeon at St. Vincent’s Medical Center; Richard Fannin, financial adviser with Wells Fargo advisors; and retired 4th Judicial Circuit Judge Hugh Carithers.

They will work to attract sponsors and relay teams, with the Chahlavis focusing on the health care community, Fannin on the business community, and Carithers on the legal community and related industries, according to a news release from JALA.

Nemours Children’s Specialty Care kicked off the 2020 campaign with a $10,000 lead gift.

Proceeds from the Nov. 16-21 six-marathon relay series will support an endowment for the Northeast Florida Medical Legal Partnership. Baptist Health will match donations at 125%.

The program provides civil legal aid to pediatric patients and their families to ensure they have access to safe housing, health care, educational accommodations and other critical services.

Nemours and Baptist Health/Wolfson Children’s Hospital are among the partner institutions.

“We know that, just as adults, children are affected by many social determinants of health, and the Northeast Florida Medical Legal Partnership is about overcoming those socio-economic barriers to achieve better health outcomes for our region’s kids, ” said JALA CEO Jim Kowalski in the release.

“As a current member of The Florida Bar Foundation’s board of directors and former chair of the 4th Judicial Circuit Pro Bono Committee, I have been dedicated to increasing access to justice for the underserved in our community for many years. I am pleased to continue this commitment by helping generate greater support for Freed to Run and the Northeast Florida Medical Legal Partnership,” Carithers said in the release.

Freed to Run began in 2017 when Gunster shareholder Mike Freed ran six marathons in six days from the steps of the Florida Supreme Court to the lawn at the Duval County Courthouse, stopping at county courthouses along the route and raising more than $70,000 for JALA. 

Each of the past two years, Freed repeated the journey accompanied on each of the event’s six days by relay teams, several of which will return for their third year.

For information about sponsoring Freed to Run, registering a team or donating, visit