Common Sense with Dominick Bonny – Stronger Women, Part II: Selina Danko


Join host Dominick Bonny and learn about how local ultramarathon runner Selina Danko prepares to run races like the 200 mile Bigfoot Ultramarathon. Dominick also thanks the generous benefactor who sent a very special gift to his last guests, Evan and Frank Cone.


Common Sense with Dominick Bonny – Stronger Women, Part II: Selina Danko Transcript


Hello and welcome to episode fifty-eight of Common Sense, I’m Dominick Bonny and in this episode, we’re going to meet a local ultra-marathon runner named Selina Danko. But first, I want to give a shout-out to a generous, anonymous person who last week sent Evan and Frank Cone this amazing gift. In the last episode, episode fifty-seven, I featured Evan and Frank and presumably someone saw it and decided to send Evan this Ultimate Collector Series Star Wars Lego set of an Imperial Star Destroyer, which for you non-Star Wars fans out there, is basically a big spaceship. If you watched that episode, you’ll know that Evan loves Legos, especially Harry Potter and Star Wars Legos. Well, Frank emailed me last week and said quote: “This was delivered to our house this morning. Neither Patty or I ordered it. We can only assume that some kind person saw your broadcast and sent it to Evan. We are very grateful to the person or persons that got this Lego build for Evan. We’ll have many hours and days (probably weeks!) of enjoyment with this build. It’s a tremendous act of kindness that none of us at our house will ever forget.” endquote

That generous act of kindness not only made Evan’s day, it also made mine. Sometimes it’s easy to get down on myself and wonder, who actually watches this show? There’s no way to know how much of an impact I’m making apart from website hits, anecdotal evidence like this, and feedback from viewers. It takes a lot of time and effort to produce this program, and I make no money from it. So when I see something like this it makes me feel like all the time and effort I put into this show is worth it. So thank you to this generous benefactor, and thank you to everyone who watches this program. My goal is for this show to create a space to showcase how average people can be inspiring. Virtue isn’t a word that we use much anymore these days, but to the Founding Fathers and mothers of this nation, this experiment in democracy, it was a very important word. In many of their minds, this American experiment would not work unless the citizens possessed both virtue AND knowledge. Samuel Adams, the cousin of John Adams, our second president, said quote: “If Virtue and Knowledge are diffused among the People, they will never be enslaved. This will be their great Security.”

Unfortunately, neither virtue nor knowledge are diffused among the people. Great swathes of our population are enslaved, mentally, to misinformation, conspiracy theories and snake-oil salesmen masquerading as “alternative medicine practitioners.” So what does one do? You could get mad, you could get mean, you could lose faith in humanity, or you could go looking for virtue. You could seek to remind your friends, neighbors and community that those possessing virtue are still out there, that they do still exist, even if theirs aren’t the loudest voices with the biggest platforms. Frank, Patty and Evan Cone that rarest of commodities these days, virtue. And so does my next guest, Selina Danko. But add to that grit, determination and a force of will that is truly impressive. She may be small in stature, but she is a giant when it comes to a mastery of the self. She’s not only a marathon runner, but an ultra-marathon runner. To folks like Selina, 26.2 miles, the standard marathon length, is just the beginning. She has run 200 mile races, and I think that calling that impressive is an understatement. So let’s go to Selina’s house now and learn more about her and why she has dedicated part of her life to long-distance running. 

Interview segment I

Stay tuned after the break for more.


Welcome back, let’s get right back to my interview with ultra-marathon runner Selina Danko. 

Interview segment II

When I started planning a series called “Stronger Women” I immediately thought of Selina Danko and Monica Cahalen, who I showcased in episode fifty-three. Both women prove that it doesn’t matter what your gender is, toughness is mental. I know plenty of big strong men with cosmetically crafted physiques who when they catch a cold act like they’ve been laid low by the bubonic plague. And I know plenty of women, women like Selina, who are so mentally tough they can push themselves past the pain, past the fatigue and complete grueling 200-mile footraces in mountainous terrain. If anyone tries to tell you that men are inherently superior or tougher than women tell them about Selina Danko and Monica Cahalen. Because it’s not just about being physically strong, it’s also about mental toughness, and in the coming chapters of this “Stronger Women” series I want to showcase women who personify and symbolize mental strength in the face of adversity. Maybe that’s a nurse or medical professional who has been stuck in what has become a grueling slog of a profession even as colleagues quit out of protest of vaccine mandates, or leave for more lucrative traveling opportunities or simply can’t take it anymore and are burned out. Or maybe that stronger woman is a person with a disability who has to navigate the world in ways that would be anathema to those of us who have never experienced what it’s like to live with such a burden. Strength takes many forms, and one gender doesn’t have a monopoly on it. In fact, I would and frequently do argue that most of the time the men who go to great lengths to prove the strength of their arms are often weak of mind, and spirit. So stay tuned in the coming weeks for more in this “Stronger Women” series, and if you have someone in mind that would fit the bill of a “stronger woman” feel free to reach out and nominate someone! Just email info@ncwlife dot com and the folks here at the station will forward the email on to me. That’s all for this episode of Common Sense, join me next week and meet Carin Smith, who wrote a Rotary grant that resulted in a half-million dollars going to a project called Hanwash, which according to the official website quote “develops and implements business-based best practices for public and private collaborations to build capacity in local communities to deliver thoughtfully managed and sustainable clean water and sanitation to all the citizens of Haiti.” I’m Dominick Bonny and that’s next time on Common Sense.