John Buckner

I currently live in Keller, Texas with my wife of nine years, Andrea and our four children. I grew up in the small Iowa town of Fort Dodge. After high school I relocated to Texas and soon began attending the University of North Texas where I earned a B.A. in Psychology and recently a M. Ed. in Educational Leadership. I am in my eighth year as a Special Education Social Emotional Assistance Classroom Teacher. I’ve also spent five years coaching football, basketball, and track. I am looking forward to transitioning into an educational leadership position soon.

My first experience with triathlon was at the end of 2013 when I survived a sprint triathlon with very little knowledge or skill in any of the three disciplines. Through 2014 I pushed to complete another sprint, three olympic distance events, and 70.3 IRONMAN Texas. By 2015 I set a goal to complete my first full IRONMAN. In my search for the perfect event I discovered Smile Train as the charity partner of IRONMAN Arizona and admittedly I initially had more doubts about my ability to fundraise versus my ability to finish the race. Turns out I had no reason to have any doubts because Smile Train provided all the fundraising and training support I needed to have a successful IRONMAN experience. Most importantly, I know that through my efforts and with the support of my family and Smile Train my IRONMAN experience created a positive life-changing impact on the lives of 20+ children. I enjoyed my experience and impact so much I returned to IMAZ in 2016 with Smile Train and I am now a 2X IRONMAN and have provided 30+ new smiles!

I look forward to continuing my involvement with Smile Train as an Alumni Ambassador Committee Member in 2017!