Thursday, July 12, 2018

Bellingham native Chris Kwiatkowski added to Husky track and field staff as assistant distance coach...

SEATTLE—The University of Washington track & field staff, led by program director Maurica Powell & head coach Andy Powell, announced the hiring on Thursday of Bellingham HS product Chris Kwiatkowski (left/photo courtesy American University) as an assistant distance coach.

"I am thrilled to join the University of Washington cross country and track & field program," he said. "Maurica and Andy Powell are two of the most electrifying coaches in the country and I feel so fortunate to reunite with them.

Kwiatkowski is a 2012 graduate of the University of Oregon, where he competed in both cross country and track on the Duck’s national championship teams under Andy Powell. He was a multi-time scorer at the Pac-12 Championships in both cross country and outdoor track for the Ducks. A finalist in the 5,000m at the 2012 NCAA Outdoor Track Championships, finishing 15th, Kwiatkowski holds personal bests of 3:47.8 in the 1500m, 13:51.8 in the 5,000m, 28:56 in the 10,000m and 48:17 for 10 miles. He earned his Bachelor of Science in Human Physiology.

Kwiatkowski (c) at 2006 Washington state
high school meet (cover photo
courtesy NW Runner magazine)
He began his coaching at American University as a volunteer assistant in August of 2012. Under the tutelage of former AU head coach Matt Centrowitz, Kwiatkowski worked his way up to become the full-time assistant coach for the Eagles cross country and track programs starting in 2016. During this time, Kwiatkowski also balanced a professional road-racing career which culminated with a 77th place finish in the 2016 Olympic Trials Marathon.

Kwiatkowski found his way to American through his best friend and college roommate – Matthew Centrowitz, the 2016 Olympic gold medalist in the 1500m. His connection with the Centrowitz family runs deep. He is the co-author of the elder Matt Centrowitz’s published memoir “Like Father, Like Son”.

The 2007 Bellingham High School grad was the Washington state 2A champion in the 3200m with personal bests of 4:16 for 1600m and 9:05 for 3200m.

"I want to thank my mentor, Matt Centrowitz, as well as Sean Graham and the administration at American University," said Kwiatkowski. "Without them, I would not be here."

With Kwiatkowski’s hiring, the Huskies have filled four of its six coaching spots, with only a sprints and a throws coach position remaining to be filled.

NOTE:  The University of Washington and American University contributed to this report. 

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