Board of Directors

The Tobacco Road Marathon is a 503(c) non-profit entity run by a group of volunteers. No member of the Board is paid as a result of this race. We are all a part of this race because of our love of running and a desire to share our experience with others.

Kazem Yahyapour - President

Kazem is owner and president of Auto Dealers Investments Inc. Since 2001, Kazem has made a successful transition from the corporate high-tech world to running his own financial company. He is president of the Wakefield High School Wolverine Athletic Booster Club and is a coach for Wakefield High School's cross country team. Kazem is Co-Founder of City of Oaks Marathon and race director for Wakefield high school's Students Against Drinking and Driving 5K race. The Wakefield race was organized to increase awareness of the dangers of drinking and driving.

Diagnosed with coronary artery disease in 2002, Kazem started running to lose weight and improve his general health. Within four months, he ran his first marathon (Myrtle Beach) and, since then, has run an additional 15 marathons. His favorite is the Boston Marathon, which he has finished 10 times. Kazem has a true passion for running.

Cid L. Cardoso Jr. - Vice President

Cid Cardoso, Jr. has completed 28 Ironman races including Hawaii Ironman 8 times. His fastest Ironman time is 9 hr and 47 min and his fastest Hawaii Ironman time is 10 hr and 14 min. Cid has finished in the top 5 overall at the Umstead Marathon 4 times, including a win in 2004. He has raced the Mount Mitchell 40 Mile Challenge numerous times, including 2 second place overall finishes. In 2014, he qualified for USAT’s Long Distance World Duathlon Championships in Switzerland and the Ironman 70.3 Triathlon World Championships in Canada.

Born in Sao Paulo, Brazil, Cid studied business at the University of Virginia. He is the owner and founder of Inside-Out Sports, which has been serving runners and triathletes in North Carolina for over 20 years, with locations in Cary, Raleigh and Charlotte. Cid lives in Cary with his wife of 20 years, Kathleen, daughter Alexa, son Scott and daughter Monica. 


Mark Dill - Marketing and Publicity

Mark Dill, president of Mark Dill Enterprises, Inc., has dedicated his career to the profession of public relations and marketing. Mark has worked in a number of executive vice president positions for a variety of corporations including AT&T in Silicon Valley, Nortel in RTP, Corvis of Maryland, Blue Cross-Blue Shield NC and the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. He holds baccalaureates in journalism and marketing from Indiana University and Long Beach State respectively as well as an MBA from San Jose State.

Dedicated to exercise Mark has completed marathons and numerous half marathons including the 2010 Tobacco Road Half Marathon. Mark and Esther, a Boston Qualifier runner, have lived in Cary for 23 years. Together they raised two daughters, Tamara and Sherri, graduates of NC State and UNC Wilmington, respectively.

Dave Cockman - Medical


Jon Flaherty - Sponsorship

Jon Flaherty is an Alliance Director for SAS Institute and is leading the efforts to jointly build out an Analytics Academy with Accenture. About to celebrate his 27th year with SAS, Jon attributes much of his success in running and fitness to the corporate environment SAS has provided over his career with the company.

Promotion of fitness has always been emphasized within SAS, and it was in 1989 when Jon ran his first marathon, the US Marine Corps Marathon. Since that time he has averaged at least one marathon a year. Highlights in his running career were his first marathon PR(2:48) set in Boston in 1996, and later to be broken in Chicago in 2001 with a 2:46 finishing time. Additionally, he is a World Duathlon qualifier and has gone on to compete in Ultra events.

A graduate of NC State, he resides in Apex with his wife and two daughters.


Eric Johnson - Aid Stations

Eric has been involved with the triangle running community since 1999. After serving as the North Carolina Roadrunners Club Volunteer Coordinator for several years he did a short stint as the President of the NCRC. Eric transitioned from the NCRC over to the Raleigh Galloway program, eventually becoming the Assistant Program Director.

He has completed over 100 marathons including one in each state. In 2012 he became the third North Carolinian to complete 100 marathons. Eric has also worked with the Tobacco Road Marathon with aid station planning and overnight supply delivery. He likes to say he was appointed to the Board Of Directors so that he wouldn’t run this race anymore and could work more. The truth... he truly loves the sport of running and seeing so many runners complete their goal of running a Half Marathon or Full Marathon brings that enjoyment full circle. Eric works tirelessly to make marathoning in the Triangle a success.


Tim Kirk - Race Village

For over a decade, Tim has been actively involved in planning and volunteering in races in Massachusetts and North Carolina. He also has enjoyed coaching his sons in various sports including coaching his youngest son, as an unaffiliated runner, to the national finals of Junior Olympics in cross country.

After years of less than healthy living, Tim made a drastic change to his lifestyle and began running marathons in 2004, with the Bay State Marathon. As a runner, he has raced all distances from 5K through ultra-marathon. He has run several marathons, with a PR of 3:34, and is a three time finisher of the Boston Marathon.  In addition, Tim is an avid road and mountain biker. When he isn’t working, you’ll find him mountain biking, running trails, disc golfing or travelling.

Tim is the owner and principle of All Out Sports Marketing, LLC, a manufacturers’ rep agency specializing in endurance sports products and operating throughout the southeast and mid-Atlantic U.S. This is the perfect job for Tim as it allows him to work and play in the industry as well as to interact daily with runners and athletes of all abilities and accomplishments.

Tim and his wife, Caryn, reside in Raleigh, NC. They have two grown sons, Ryan and Evan. The entire family enjoys long distance running and staying active in nature.    


Rebecca Warriner - Expo & Athlete Communications

Rebecca has been in athletics for as long as she can remember. Her official (aka recorded times) entry into races began in 1997 and she has not stopped since.

Over the years, she has run everything from 5k's to ultra-marathons, however, she was born to be a triathlete. Rebecca has competed in triathlons of every distance from sprints to iron distance races since 2000 in both Texas and North Carolina. 

Rebecca has taken her love of triathlons and running to the next level by organizing the Smile Train Triathlon, a sprint-distance tri, that has raised over $250,000 for The Smile Train since it began in 2008. In 2009 she founded the Buddy Run in Wake Forest benefitting the local Backpack Buddies programs.

She has been a part of the teams that organize events such as the Ramblin' Rose race series, Tar Heel 10 Miler, Bull City Race Fest, and the Kerr YMCA Kids Tri.

Rebecca and her husband, Richard, live in Wake Forest with their 3 children Polly, John, and Roy.


Michael Yahyapour - Finance

Michael came on to the board in the summer of 2010, and serves as the treasurer and finance manager for the Tobacco Road Marathon. He has been on teams producing 5k and 10k races. Michael enjoys basketball, football, and most sprint distance races; he hopes to run the Tobacco Road Marathon in the near future.

Michael majored in Accounting and Finance from the University of North Carolina Wilmington. He works for Auto Dealers Investments and also runs his own consulting business on the side. 


Ken Polleck - Run Club Activation