Peter Verbiscar-Brown Conquers the Terrible Two!

On June 15, our Executive Director Emeritus, Peter Verbiscar-Brown rode the infamous Terrible Two here in Sonoma County, one of the toughest 200-mile bicycle events in California! He trained for 6 months with vast hill climbing, but 200 miles with 18,000 feet of elevation gain was beyond what he had attempted before. Following the ride, Peter traveled to Uganda to visit Global Partners for Development supported women’s groups, and to meet sponsored girls in Global Partners’ scholarship program. And to Tanzania, where he gave the keynote address at a Global Partners sponsored forum on Sustainable Development.

Support Peter by donating at (Note: select “other” from the “Where would you like your donation to go?” drop-down menu and write “Peter’s Terrible Two” in the text box that appears)! Contributions to his ride will educate girls through Global Partners for Development supported organizations in Uganda and Tanzania. Providing the opportunity for girls to continue their education to finish high school, and go on to higher education or vocational skills training, is a powerful tool for positive change. And without ado, here’s the story of Peter’s big bicycle ride and trip!


EWIDA scholarship recipients

Supporters, friends.


I finished right at 11 pm after 17 1/2 hours on the bike, which landed me the last spot on the finishers’ roster. Six months ago, inspired by the event t-shirt design, I began training for the Terrible Two, by many standards one of, if not the toughest, single day bicycle rides in California.  The distance of 200 miles is challenging, but 18,000 feet of elevation gain is the big test.  Ok, I dedicated a big part of my life to getting an event jersey, how shallow can that be, but no matter because the game and enjoyment of training and riding long, the care by the many volunteers, and your generosity, superseded any prize.  And here’s a shout-out to my dear wife Noni, who put up with and supported my eternal bicycling, knowing the satisfying challenge it gave me.


Volunteers!  The best I can liken the race rest stops are the NASCAR pit crews. You ride in, someone says, “You’re looking good,” relieve yourself, and upon return to the bike, water bottle mixes are done to specification and filled, food requests honored, anything else you need, and off you go.  About 3 minutes per stop, no worry.  This was especially useful during the first 112 miles to Warm Springs dam rest stop, as there is an enforced cut-off time there, which after 8 bicycling hours I made by 5 minutes.


At least 4 rest stops along the way, I had second thoughts about the coming next set of big climbs and miles.  At Warm Springs dam I hear, “You can do it!”   And “want another V8, and M&Ms, here, have them all!”  And with that my bike gets a little shove off and I am swept away by, “It’s your backyard out there, man!”   At Stewart’s Point Rancheria I missed the cutoff time by a few minutes and was prepared to call it a day, have my number pulled, the last rider to the site.  But no one said anything, so I thought, well I’ll just go to Fort Ross rest stop and call it a day there, it’s been a good ride, and the coast and weather were lovely for a final push.  At Fort Ross, everyone is starting to pack up, the temperature is dropping, I’m offered chicken soup and hot chocolate, and before I can say, “I think that’s about it, gang” a volunteer says, “You can make it to Monte Rio before they close, don’t doddle here, get going!”  So I went.


Straight up Fort Ross Road, by the top the last light of the day reflects off the grey sea far below, I turn on my front and back lights and put on my wool base layer, night descends as does the steep and curvy road to Cazadero. Blitzing toward Monte Rio, alight by the chicken soup, too much caffeine and sugar for the previous 15 hours, I leapfrog for the last 35 miles with a support vehicle watching for my continued safety.  At the final rest stop, a lone remaining volunteer offers my last sustenance, a couple of cookies, and says, you can do it, won’t be easy, you can make it to the finish on time. Ok, I’ll give it a go.  Riding at night, which I’ve never done before, without much traffic but familiar roads, is an ethereal experience.  The world gets small, focus comes of necessity.  And then the finish line volunteers, all kind and being of service to the bitter end, after what must have been a very long night and day and night. The finish line clock was a beacon of beauty.


I am left with deep appreciation for the support provided by the volunteers, and by YOU!  The experience of being so encouraged will linger a lot longer than a weary body.  Later I heard that at 71 years, 9 months, I was the oldest finisher ever in the 43-year history of the event. And here’s a picture of me in the prized jersey.


Two days later, I boarded a plane to East Africa to see Global Partners projects in action and to attend a Sustainable Development conference put on by our staff, and where I gave the keynote address.  In Uganda, we were fortunate to meet several groups of girls sponsored in our Scholars program, one group having finished their university studies and now moving into their professions and promising new futures as teachers, administrators, business, medicine, contributing to their communities. Each girl told of determination in overcoming daunting obstacles like being orphaned at a young age in poverty, yet finding her voice and confidence with education.


And I met the girls who will complete their secondary school studies this year and benefit by your contribution. They are a lively bunch, and immensely grateful to Global Partners and to you for giving them a chance to continue their studies. Each of the girls was chosen for her academic potential, and would otherwise not have been able to stay in school, having lost one or both parents and any financial help from home. At such a young age, the girls are pursuing their education and life possibilities with enormous resolve. I was inspired, it is a privilege to ride and fundraise on their behalf.




Announcing the 2019 GPFD/BCF Community-Driven Development Forum

We are thrilled to announce the 2019  GPFD/BCF Community-Driven Development Forum, which will be held on June 26th-28th in Arusha, Tanzania. With the theme of “Sustainable Development,” this event is possible due to a generous grant from the Brethren Community Foundation (BCF). The Forum presents an unparalleled opportunity for East Africans and Americans with a wide range of skill sets, knowledge, and experiences to come together to explore sustainability issues, collaborate on innovative ideas, and learn from one another.

Sustainable development is vital to addressing East Africa’s problems in the long-term, yet sustainability is too often overlooked and undervalued. When faced with extreme poverty, rapid population growth, and lack of basic infrastructure, East African communities and NGOs frequently ignore the economic, social, and environmental challenges of sustainability. Through the Forum, we aim  to advance practical and effective solutions to building resilient and sustainable East African communities.

Many of our staff and partners across East Africa, as well as faculty members and BCF fellowship recipients from Whittier College, will be participating in and contributing to the Forum. We are pleased to announce that the keynote address will be delivered by Peter Verbiscar-Brown, GPFD Executive Director Emeritus and current board member. We are greatly looking forward to this rewarding and informative event!

2016 Peter Verbiscar Brown Rides in Levi’s Gran Fondo

Dear friend/supporter,

I am so happy to write to you again and ask for your pledge in support of my annual bicycle ride.  Now in my 6th Gran Fondo and 69th calendar year, I will ride the 103 miles and 9,000 ft elevation gain of Levi’s Gran Fondo here in beautiful Sonoma County, with 7,000 other  riders over big climbs, awesome descents, beautiful scenery, through vineyards, redwood forests, majestic mountains, lovely country lanes,  and our fierce and wild coastline. As the Gran Fondo folks say, “It’s the definitive cycling experience in our hemisphere…and not for the faint of heart.”


The happy ones pictured are Keely Croxton and Steven Hurt, co-founders/organizers of the Tour de H2O, the great Global Partners bicycling fundraiser for clean water.  As for me, I am happy:


* Because I love to ride my bicycle to support the great humanitarian organization imbedded in my heart and soul, Global Partners for Development.  This will be my 39th year of fundraising via running or bicycling to end hunger and poverty.


* Because it’s been quite a recovery year. With severe sciatica in early January, I have been on a 9 month campaign to wellness, now fully recovered, I am relieved to say, and ready for the challenge. Your potential pledges have been my incentive over these many training months, really.


* Because I get to connect with you again!  I know, for some of you this in my only outreach, my bad, but here we are and I appreciate you!  Thanks to so many of you, over 5 years of my Gran Fondo riding, you have contributed $94,209 for Global Partners’ good work in East Africa.


27 Years of Africa Projects


As it has effectively done for decades, Global Partners used your donations to create scholarships for impoverished, capable, inspiring girls to attend secondary schools and higher education, building wells and rainwater harvest systems for clean water, sanitation and hygiene training to villages, schools and medical facilities; building school classrooms; and granting dairy cows to rural women’s groups for nutrition and income. You can absolutely count on Global Partners to produce practical, tangible, positive results in people’s lives.  I proudly remain a Board member.


Pledging for my Gran Fondo


Will you join me with a generous pledge?  Contributions of every size appreciated, all good!  As a kick-off to this year’s campaign, big thanks to Betty Biliske and Patrick Holmes whose $1,000 donation has already arrived at GPFD. We are good to go!  To donate by check, make payable to Global Partners, and send to me at 5145 Burnham Ranch Rd, Santa Rosa, CA 95404.


To donate by credit card or PayPal go to:  Check out the great projects!


I carry your generosity with me all the way, thank you!

Join Jack and Shirley Steck at the Long Beach Marathon

(From Jack Steck Board Treasurer)

On October 9, 2016, having less sense than ever, at the Long Beach Marathon, Shirley and I intend to each walk a half marathon-13.1miles again as we did 3 years ago. Shirley is now 75 and I am 76.  Our bodies are hanging in there and we think we can do it again.

Shirley and I have chosen to do this together, to support Global Partners for Development (GPFD) programs in East Africa. GPFD funds Clean Water wells and delivery systems, Education Construction and Girls Scholarship programs, and other programs related to Health and Medical access. We are passionate about these programs, which are focused on the very poor, most living on only a few dollars a day of income. GPFD has focused on Uganda, Kenya, and Tanzania development as these countries have fairly stable governments and development work is very effective there. For this event, we will target most donations for Girls scholarship programs.

We are part of a small fundraising “team” with a $50K goal in this Long Beach marathon, and for our part, have committed to raise $10,000 or more for GPFD. We’d love for you to consider sponsoring us at any level that works for you. If you can do this, please send a check made to GPFD to 1215 Curtiss Ave San Jose, CA 95125. If you’d like to use a credit card instead, visit our Marathon team page at :

For more info about GPFD, visit
For more marathon info, visit

We have decided that we will personally match all donations that you make. So your contributions will be doubled.
Thanks so much for your consideration and support. We’ll followup later with pictures and the results of our efforts. Meanwhile, please send money soon 🙂

Jack and Shirley

p.s. If you would like to join us at this event, we would love that! Give it some thought 🙂

Join former Congresswoman Lynn Woolsey at her Home in Petaluma

Join former Congresswoman Lynn Woolsey and Congresswoman Barbara Lee in celebrating the work of the late Congressman Donald M. Payne Sr.

Save the Date!
Sunday, May 15, 2016 (2-4 PM)

A fundraiser at the home of Congresswoman Lynn Woolsey (Ret.)

923 B St 
Petaluma, CA 94952  


Danny Glover



Global Partners for Development


Children’s Humanitarian International

Gray Foundation

Marin Interfaith Task Force on the Americas

North Bay Black Chamber of Commerce

Petaluma Blacks for Community Development

Praxis Peace Institute

Sonoma County NAACP

Keir Milan

Professor Mutombo M’Panya

Dr. Michael Naegler


FOOD, WINE & MUSIC with special guests from the Vineyards to Villages initiative, Christopher Creek Winery, Fritz Winery, and Viszlay Vineyards.

The late Congressman Donald Payne had many admirers around the globe, particularly in Africa and the Caribbean.  This event will honor his many achievements and will help raise funds for the foundation’s many projects around the world.  For that, we need your support.  You can make a difference and carry out his legacy with your tax deductible contribution towards the Donald Payne Sr. Global Foundation, a 501c3 nonprofit.  Please mark your calendar for Sunday afternoon, May 15th in Congresswoman Lynn Woolsey’s beautiful backyard.  Invitations will follow.  For sponsorship levels and more details, please call Therese at 707-664-1687 or go to:


Peter’s Gran Fondo — GO PETER — MAKE A PLEDGE

Peter Verbiscar Brown’s Gran Fondo

Peter will be riding in Levi’s Gran Fondo on October 3rd 2015. If you want to support Peter and his ride, visit our webpage at or Donate directley here. Peter is our Executive Director Emeritus and an active board member, he is an amazingly fit individual and continues to guide and support Global Partners.

Peter Says…

I started running when I moved to Hawaii to go to grad school in 1976, and within 3 months of training, I ran my first Honolulu Marathon.  Next year’s marathon I ran for pledges for The Hunger Project, to end world hunger, and got hooked on doing athletic events for a cause which continues to this day.  Along the way I ran 55 marathons, 5 ultramarathons, one transcontinental relay, 3 triathlons, and now century bicycle rides. I have completed and raised funds in them all for World Runners and now Global Partners for Development, where I was Executive Director for 25 years.  I love this organization, totally effective in putting donations directly to work in Africa to alleviate poverty, improve health and education prospects, especially for girls, and foster economically sustainable communities.

Through the years and miles, my donors have been dedicated and generous, I am grateful for their unfailing support, and welcome yours.

Levi Leipheimer’s King Ridge GranFondo is a challenging, long distance, mass-participation cycling event that welcomes professional, amateur, and recreational cyclists of all abilities. While not strictly competitive, our rides are timed to ensure cyclists complete the entire course and have some way to gauge their performance along the route. This is not a race, but it is expected that people will push themselves and others to excel within the bounds of safety. It is an opportunity to ride your heart out in some of the greatest cycling country this continent has to offer.

3rd Annual Saylor’s Party! its a Bootleg Ball

Come join us Saturday, November 15th at 5pm at Saylor’s Restaurant in Sausalito, California.

We have had a Rockin Rum Party and a Tequila Fiesta. This year, we are having a Bootleg Ball! $50 Per person includes two bootleg cocktails, dinner, and dessert. Prepared by Saylor’s master chef Sean Saylor.


We at Saylor’s Restaurant and Bar are inspired by the lifestyle and cuisine of Cabo, a vacation destination at the Southern tip of the Baja California peninsula known for its relaxed and cultivated atmosphere/ambiance. We fell in love with Cabo and want to share our passion for all things Cabo by offering a unique opportunity for diners to experience fresh and sophisticated Cabo-inspired cuisine in a festive and relaxed atmosphere.

Creative Chef Sean Saylor uses the freshest local ingredients and seafood to create a distinctive menu of dishes that reflect the combination of California and Mexican cuisine found in Cabo. Ceviche, Carnitas and Cabo Prawns are a few items you will find on our menu.  Sean’s approach is to slow-cook foods to bring out the best of their natural flavors.

Fifth Annual Tour de H2O (TDH)

The riders are gathering for a mass start at the fifth annual Tour de H2O (TDH).  It’s a beautiful summer day in Columbus, Ohio, and the excitement is building!  I can feel the positive energy in the air, which is coming from the many cyclists and volunteers gathered together for the purpose of raising funds for the construction of water supply projects in dry, rural areas of Western Kenya.  Tires are inflated, water bottles topped off, helmets on, sun-screen applied… we are ready to ride!  One of my favorite things to do on TDH event day is to say a few words to the TDH participants before the participants depart, but how can I quickly and clearly communicate to them the importance of this effort?  The passion I have for helping bring clean water to those who have none?  The dire situation so many people around the world suffer with daily due to the lack of clean water?  The tangible difference I know we can all make with a relatively small amount of money?  The love and compassion I feel for the extreme poor that I’ve met while traveling in Africa?

Do I tell them about the e-mail we received in 2011 from a rural African water committee where TDH funded water well had been installed with the help of the great folks from Global Partners for Development (  There had been an outbreak of cholera in the area near this particular village and they were not affected as they no longer were forced to obtain their drinking water from the nearby polluted stream.


Or maybe I mention the women of the very rural Village of Bam Got in Western Kenya… incredibly hard working and industrious ladies whose lives were changed overnight when water stared flowing from the new well constructed from funds donated during the first TDH.  No more 2-3 hour walks each day hauling heavy buckets of water… no more illness caused by contaminated water… more free time to produce goods to sell so that they can have the money to send their children to school… the valuable experience gained in community development and project management… So many inspiring stories to tell and so little time.

In the end, I had so many different thoughts in my head that I was only able to give a rider safety talk, thank our generous sponsors and thank everyone for supporting the TDH.  Thankfully, my lovely wife Keely was by my side and quickly gave a brief but beautiful speech about the dire situation many of these Africans are in and the very real difference we all are making.  Then it was my turn to say, “LET”S RIDE!”

Please Visit for More Information on Participation Opportunities

Charity + Fitness = Long Beach Marathon

Attention all runners, outdoor enthusiasts, and fitness connoisseurs! Global Partners will be participating in the 2014 Long Beach Marathon (LBM) in October. The Long Beach International City Bank Marathon will take place on October 12th in Long Beach, California. The event also includes a half marathon and 5K for those of us less inclined in the running department. Global Partners will donate 100% of the money raised from LBM directly to our programs.

For more information about Global Partners participation in the marathon, visit

For registration information, visit

For more information about the Long Beach Marathon, visit

Happy running!