M60 Olympian Willie Banks seeks election at Ohio meeting as IAAF rep nominee

The fountain statue behind Willie isn't crying. It's a lady holding a water container pottery.The fountain statue behind Willie isn't holding her head crying. It's a lady holding a water-carrying pottery.

Willie Banks may be forgiven if he doesn’t have time to compete in coming years. My M60 jumper friend is leaping into USATF/IAAF politics big time. As I note in my Times of San Diego story, Willie is seeking to replace Stephanie Hightower as the American representative on the powerful IAAF Council. His candidacy is a surprise, and since nobody else had reported this (besides the USATF Document Library), I jumped on it.

My first story covers the basics, but notable is something Willie says in his statement of candidacy: “I believe I am uniquely qualified by both experience and temperament to assist our sport globally, while representing our U.S. athletes and interests with the universal goal to expand athlete’s competitive and financial opportunities in all disciplines, on the track and on the roads; to promote clean sport and support athletes’ rights; to grow youth and masters programs; and take our sport to the people through both track and field development programs, and road races in every city and town on every continent.”

Notice he said the M-word? Masters programs!

So if Willie can bounce Stephanie at the Ohio annual meeting this month and get elected to the IAAF Council at the 2019 Doha (Qatar) General Assembly at next year’s IAAF world meet, he’ll be in a great position to advocate for geezertrack. Maybe he can guarantee masters exhibitions at IAAF world meets and (one can pray) the Summer Olympic Games.

Lots of things possible on the M-front.

If you attend the Ohio annual meeting, give Willie’s pitch kind consideration. It’s hard to displace an incumbent, but Mr. Banks has a great backstory and excellent credentials.

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About the Author

Ken Stone
Ken has followed track as an athlete, writer and webmaster since the late 1960s, and saw most sessions of track and field at the 1984 Los Angeles and 1996 Atlanta Olympics. He also attended the 1988, 1992, 2000, 2004, 2008 and 2012 Trials. He worked for 10 newspapers and now reports for Times of San Diego. Write him at TrackCEO@aol.com or kens@timesofandiego.com. Story tips always welcome!

2 Comments on "M60 Olympian Willie Banks seeks election at Ohio meeting as IAAF rep nominee"

  1. Banks has good connections with Japanese track also.

  2. I think that Willie would be a great choice. A former Olympian and world record holder who still competes as a Master and he also coaches. Have to believe that he would have an excellent perspective on the sport. That he is a lawyer has to be a plus. While I think that getting Masters exhibitions at IAAF meets and the Olympics is nice, more masters meets around the country would benefit more of us. In my area[mid south], we have very few USATF masters meets.

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