The Iditarod Trail Committee Board of Directors has named philanthropists Ed and Cathy Rasmuson as honorary mushers for the 2019 Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race, according to a news release sent Monday. 

“Ed and Cathy live their lives by the principles of helping their fellow Alaskans," said Board President Mike Mills. "You can see that through the work at the Rasmuson Foundation and with their everyday lives as a third-generation Alaska family. They also embody many of the characteristics of what makes this race a treasured Alaska tradition, including perseverance, strength and hard work."

The Rasmuson Foundation is a nonprofit organization that funds projects and programs throughout Alaska in the areas of arts and culture, health and human services, community development and education.

Each year, the honorary mushers wear bib number 1 and leave the starting line first during the Iditarod's ceremonial start in downtown Anchorage.

“Both Cathy and I are touched to be named the 2019 Iditarod honorary mushers," Ed Rasmuson said. "This race has been an integral part of both of our lives and it epitomizes what Alaska is all about. Our family is most excited about the honor too."

Although the Rasmusons will be out of state during the March 2 event, members of their family will attend.

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