SAN FRANCISCO (KGO) -- Controversy surrounded Bay to Breakers in the days leading up to the historic San Francisco 12K.
The company that now owns the race, Capstone Event Group, was publicly linked to far-right-wing political candidates through its founder's donations and had no plans to award non-binary race winners despite having the category.
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The race website says, "Bay to Breakers is a celebration of life, laughter, and the personality of San Francisco." Many argued that the company's actions showed just the opposite.
Twenty-five-year-old San Francisco teacher Cal Calamia registered for the race as non-binary. They transitioned in 2018 and serve as a trans activist and community ally outside of the classroom.
They reached out to Capstone Event Group about awarding non-binary participants in the 2022 race. In so many words, the company told Calamia, "No."
That answer didn't stop Calamia from drawing attention to the issue via social media, news outlets and publications.
The work led to Capstone Event Group adding an award at the last minute. Calamia became the first non-binary winner of Bay to Breakers on Sunday.
"It was a win only made possible by my sports activism work that exposed Bay to Breakers' blatant exclusion of a non-binary awards category and rallied the community for change," Calamia said.
Calamia joined ABC7 News anchor Jobina Fortson to discuss the race and community activism on ABC7@7.
Watch the video in the player above to hear more of their story.
If you're on the ABC7 News app, click here to watch live