INDIANAPOLIS – It is USA Track & Field Foundation Director Mark James’ passion for track & field and the legacy of his father that annually brings excitement to the throwing community. Today, fourteen worthy recipients of the John W. James Endowment grant were announced by Foundation Executive Director Tom Jackovic and Chairman Bob Greifeld.
The endowment is used to fund elite grants for men and women track athletes in the throwing events, which are traditionally under-funded, and to promote and highlight the throwing events at major competitions.
The name John W. James has become a staple among the Foundation Board of Directors, with each member continuously inspired by stories of a passionate son. John W. James was a top shot putter in high school, in Roseville, CA. Aside from his love for track & field, he was also an accomplished football player at the University of Oregon, as well as a Golden Gloves boxer. James was Nevada’s state climatologist for many years along with being a geography and meteorology professor at the University of Nevada, Reno. A respected authority on alpine climate, he was the official meteorologist of the 1968 Olympic Trials held high in the Sierras at Echo Summit, above South Lake Tahoe, CA.
"We hope these grants are a springboard for throwers as they train for the next World Championships and Olympic Games," said Mark James. "Giving athletes the resources to realize their potential is the goal."
Fourteen outstanding men and women have been selected to receive a 2014 James Endowment Grant, each in the amount of $6,000, including: Amanda Bingson (hammer throw), Kurt Roberts (shot put), Liz Podiminick (discus throw), Gwen Berry (hammer throw), Cory Martin(shot put), Britney Henry (hammer throw), Jeneva McCall (hammer throw), Felisha Johnson (shot put), Joe Kovacs (shot put), Kara Patterson (javelin throw), Lance Brooks (discus throw), Russ Winger (discus throw), Stephanie Brown-Trafton (discus throw) and Whitney Ashley (discus throw).
The Foundation Elite Athlete Grant Program contributes to the pursuit of world-class performances by American post-collegiate track and field athletes. Athletes must meet minimum performance and financial need standards to be eligible.
The USATF Foundation provides a means to attract and guide funds to new and innovative track and field programs with an emphasis on providing opportunities for youth athletes, emerging elite athletes, distance training centers and anti-doping education. The Foundation depends upon donations from its Board of Directors, major gifts and from generous fans of track & field.
Elite athletes are supported by the Foundation via monetary grants, career counseling (mentoring & jobs) and participation in Run With US! (www.rwus-now.org). Youth athletes are supported via monetary grants to youth clubs.
For more information, or to contribute to the USA Track & Field Foundation, visit www.usatffoundation.org
or contact Tom Jackovic at (412) 398-2484 or firstname.lastname@example.org