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.
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 (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?