Tuesday, December 2, 2008

USA Track & Field at the crossroads...

Beginning Wednesday, USA Track & Field will hold its annual meeting in Reno, Nevada, and paulmerca.blogspot.com will report on the major events surrounding the convention.

The convention marks the final meeting presided by current president Bill Roe, a long time fixture in the local and national track & field community, who got his start in the sport as a student manager at Nathan Hale HS and at the University of Washington, and rose to prominence through his hard work at all levels of the sport.

With Roe's term as president expiring this week, the delegates will elect a new president between Stephanie Hightower from Ohio, Dee Jensen from North Dakota, and Redmond's Bob Bowman.

Unlike past years, the office of president will be the only position on the board of directors that the membership will vote on, due to a restructuring process mandated by the US Olympic Committee that forces USA Track & Field to streamline its board of directors from 32 to 15.

Naturally, the axing of the board in half is a point of contention among the constituents of USATF, with the various factions positioning and lobbying for spots on the new board, which USATF CEO Doug Logan outlined in his blog of November 4th. Naturally, the people in groups as diverse as Youth, Masters, Officials, Long Distance Running, Race Walking, and High Performance are all wondering how this will affect their piece of the pie.

The diversity of USATF has led to infighting over the years between its constituents, as well as between the national office staff and the volunteer board of directors. Some people within USA Track & Field feel that the infighting was the lightning rod that led to former CEO Craig Masback's resignation early this year.

In preparation for this week's meetings, we've linked to a multi-part story written by Adam Jacobs of TheFinalSprint.com called, "Dysfunction Run Amuck".

You can read it here...

You can also listen to a series of questions asked of all three candidates written by Jimmie Markham in TheFinalSprint.com. The link to the podcasts are here...

NOTE: paulmerca.blogspot.com is staying neutral and chooses not to endorse any candidate for president, despite contact by all three candidates and/or their representatives.

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