Changes at Best in the Desert


Rescue Director
Robert Laxton shared on another post that Donald Jackson has resigned from Best in the Desert. What wasn’t included in that original post, that some may not have seen in other social media was Liz Marshal also resigned her position with Best in the Desert.

Donald was the Operations Manager and flawlessly kept races moving smoothly from the very day Casey had his Stroke in 2017. He has been taught well by one of the greatest. And was able to take that knowledge and experience and continue to elevate Best in the Desert races. Besides being the Operations Manager, he was the course marker, a Retreival person, a heavy equipment operator, a fence post pounder, and a just about anything needed to make the actual races happen.

Liz Marahal despite leaving Best in the Desert just two weeks before Casey’s stroke after years in the office, was Donald’s first phone call that Saturday morning. Liz, dropped her life in a moments notice and responded to Parker to ensure the races continued smoothly. Since then she has been responsible for most of the aspects of the events. She moved into Diane’s roll of running the office and making sure every aspect pre race was covered. From permits to insurances. From hotel coordinations, to dates, awards, trophies, to mountains and mountains of paperwork that are essential to the registration process. Liz has been the person responsible for this.

The two are certainly a dynamic duo of race promotion and have developed a great formula for success. Their departure from BITD will be missed and likely won’t be truly felt or realized for some time as those that pick up the pieces learn roles they need to fill.

As with any changes at high level in any organization, there will be various levels of fall out. It happened when Casey passed as some that followed Casey for a sticker and t-shirt, drifted off to the distance. Still others that either weren’t involved or limited involvement, stepped up and got more involved for a variety of reasons.

There is another big piece of this that hasn’t been mentioned though, with Donald came the entire Jackson Family. And it’s a big family. Donald’s parents, Lynn and Pam have been fixtures at the events for as long as I can remember. Lynn specifically acted as retrieval coordinator at most events. He also was a course marker, water truck driver, do anything kind of guy. Donald’s brothers, Richard and Brian have been fixtures at events as retrieval’s, course workers and heavy equipment operators. Even Donald’s two oldest sons have been involved in course marking, Retrieval and clean up. And then of course there is Kristy. The smile that after a 512 mile butt whooping is there to greet you at the finish line.

As I said before while no one person is irreplaceable in their role, this change will be felt by everyone. Best in the Desert will move forward and have already selected a new Operations Manager for their series. In time they will fill the other holes that are left vacant. I’ll let Best in the Desert announce their official stuff in their time. That is not my role in anyway.

Lastly, those that have Donald and Lizzie’s cell phone numbers, those numbers remain. Don’t act like they are gone forever just cause they are gone from Best in the Desert. They have become your family just as you have become theirs.


Well-Known Member
Great people, going to miss seeing them at the races. Giant shoes to fill for sure. Best of luck to Donald Liz and family's. Hope to run into you again, someday somewhere.
Wayne Guidinger, "The Irongook"