Where are they now?


Wisconsin had a rich history of distance running through the late-60s and up through the early nineties. In the Distance Renaissance thread I coined these eras as The Distance Boom (1967-1975), The Golden Years (1976-1984) and The Enlightment (1985-1992). Unfortunately, not everyone ends up like Steve Lacy, Tim Hacker or Chris Solinsky and secure major shoe contracts during their prime years. Most, if not all at some point, hang up the track spikes and pursue normal careers. But I am curious as to where a solid foundation that includes competitive distance running can lead someone off the track. There have to be plenty of success stories out there. Many have fallen back to teaching and coaching at the high school level but where else are our legends?

Just before the spring track season, I had the fortune of meeting Scott Jenkins at the WCCCA coaches meeting in Brookfield. His quote after recording a 4:06.38 on May 15th, 1981 in the 1600 at the Monona Grove Invitational was very telling on a lot of levels as to the type of individual Jenkins is/was.

I have goals, but I don’t like to go around telling everyone what they are. I just like to let my feet do the talking.

Source: http://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=1499&dat=19810516&id=eDUqAAAAIBAJ&sjid=tSkEAAAAIBAJ&pg=5775,3056439

After running at UW, he used his construction management/engineering background to aid the development of arenas and stadiums. Today, he is the Chairman of an organization called Green Sports Alliance and is the VP of Ballpark Operations for the Seattle Mariners/Safeco Field. Read more here. I can assure you he brings in the big bucks :wink: (Mr. Jenkins, I hope you laugh if you see this).

To accompany Jenkins, another well known entity of the “Fab Four” in the class of 1981 is Tim Hacker. After a long and successful career as a runner including Athletics West and Nike International, Dr. Tim Hacker landed himself in academia as an associate researcher for the University of Wisconsin. Read more in depth about him here.

A 2001 graduate of Waukesha West high school and Footlocker Finalist in 2000, Matt Esche is a recruiting coordinator for Bradley athletics. See his profile here.

I was going through Fox News the other night and stumbled on an interesting video about the missing Mt. Mary College student Jessica Benson. In this video I recognized a distinct last name, Dorow, as in Brian Dorow potentially of the Dorow royal family from South Division’s super teams of the mid-70s to mid-80s. He is a dean of criminal justice and clearly a contributor to certain forensic investigations. Is this the same decorated track star [newslink] from Milwaukee South 1987? I’ll need confirmation on that.

See the video below with Criminal Justice Dean Brian Dorow:

Another name I ran across was University of Georgia Professor, Eric Stabb, PhD, a former UW stud and multi-time state honoree for Janesville Parker. See his profile here.

Who else is there hitting it big in the career world with HS distance running ties to Wisconsin?


This is the same Brian Dorow who ran for South Division and graduated in 1987. He was a part of the great track teams that won 5? straight state championships. I had the pleasure to race against him several times and he was a tough son-of-a-gun in the 800. He went to Wisconsin and tried some track but stopped after a year or 2.

Another success story is Ted Balistreri who ran for Nicolet and graduated around 1984. He ran at Wisconsin and was part of some excellent teams. He was a senior when I was a freshmen and provided some nice mentoring for me as a young college runner. Today he, along with his 2 brothers and 1 sister, owns and operates a very successful grocery store in the Milwaukee area called Sendiks Market. Their dad started the business. He passed two stores to the kids when he retired and in the past 10 years, they have expanded it to 12 stores.

Certainly another name to add to this list is Jerry Schumacher. Some might not know his Wisconsin ties and history. Ran for Catholic Memorial and was a multiple private school state champion. Ran 153 and 411 in hs. Had wonderful success at Wisconsin in his last 2 years with a number of all-americans and ran 338? for 1500 meters. Now he is the head coach for the Nike Distance Project and coaches some of the best distance runners in the world.


So here’s a nice article on Sendik’s and the Balistreri’s [link]. If I read other online sources correctly, Ted is a licensed attorney? He must handle a lot of the contracts in addition to overseeing the business side of things. Definitely a nice in-house asset to the company.


Associate Dean Brian Dorow went to Greenfield HS. He is not the same Brian Dorow who ran for South Division. I asked him this a couple of years ago.

I have no idea where Brian Dorow from South Division is now, but he did go to MATC for at least one year after high school. He may have gone to UW Madison after that.