Meet the 2013 Moms Panel Hopefuls: Matt Mehaffey

Meet Matt Mehaffey!

Name: Matt Mehaffey
Location: Orlando, FL
Twitter: @mattmehaffey
Who is you favorite Disney character and why?
My favorite Disney/Pixar character is the worrisome and protective Marlin the clownfish from Finding Nemo. As a father of two boys, I completely relate to Marlin and his struggle to balance being a dad who is protective and empowering. There is absolutely nothing I wouldn’t do for Chase (4) and Jackson (3). When I watch the scene where Nemo hears from Nigel the pelican that his dad is crossing the ocean to rescue him it still give me chills!
How long have you been a runner?
I have run in spurts ever since I was a teenager but I wouldn’t consider myself a runner until June 2011. It was then I went to the doctor for a physical and he basically said, “You are a 35 year old man with a wife and two young boys and you are overweight and your cholesterol is out of control.” When I was a kid I used to get ice cream after a trip to the doctor. This time I went to the running store and got fitted for a pair of Saucony Rides. I went home and signed up for the 15th Anniversary of the RunDisney Half Marathon so I had a goal to shoot for. Since then I have lost 30 pounds and my health is where it should be. You can read my trip report from the 1/2 here.
What is your favorite runDisney event?
I have run two runDisney events so far. By far, my favorite was the 15th Anniversary Half Marathon. I also just ran the Tower of Terror 10-Miler or perhaps more accurately I swam through the humidity. I am currently training for the 20th Anniversary of the Marathon in January! I am so excited about my first 26.2!

Matt and his boys 🙂

What got you interested in the Disney Moms Panel?

In 2010, I heard a podcast on WDWRadio where Lou Mongello interviewed several members of the Disney Moms Panel and I knew I had to apply. These were my kind of people! I applied in 2010 and made it to the second round. In 2011, I made it all the way to the phone interview. This year I am hoping the third time is the charm! By the way, I am applying to be on the WDW Panel – Not the RunDisney specialist. I love RunDisney but there are others – ahem –  *Krissy Murphy* – ahem – who are far more qualified for that title!

The Mehaffey Family

Anything else you want to add?
As adoptive parents we have connected with families like ours all over the country through social media. Last year, I dreamt up a special weekend at Walt Disney World where adoptive families could come and celebrate together. We called it Magical Families (www.MagicalFamilies.org). What started out with me, my wife and one other couple quickly grew and we ended up with families coming from all over the country. Magical Families outgrew what we could handle but a national adoption group found out about it and is now leading the whole event and we’re expecting even more families this November! If you are, or know, an adoptive family send them to the Magical Families website or to the Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/MagicalFamilies). We would love to celebrate with you!

Also good luck to all the other 2013 Disney Moms Panel hopefuls! I hope we will be meeting each other this December!

Awww shucks, Matt! Thanks for the many kind words! 🙂 So glad to have you featured and much luck to you on your Moms Panel Journey!

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