COLORADO SPRINGS, Colorado, February 4. THE U.S. Olympic Committee (USOC) announced today that Chief Operating Officer Norman Bellingham will leave his position with the organization as of Feb. 11, 2011.
Bellingham joined the USOC in November 2006 and currently assists CEO Scott Blackmun with the day-to-day operations of the organization, as well as manages the continued development and implementation of the USOC's strategic plan. When he leaves later this month, he will continue to consult with the USOC on specific projects.
"For the last four-plus years, Norman has played an integral role in the leadership of the Olympic Movement in America and the operation of the USOC," Blackmun said. "Our organization is better positioned for success than at any time in recent memory thanks to Norman's dedication and effort, and I'm personally grateful for his assistance and counsel. We will miss his deep knowledge of the Olympic Movement."
"Norman has been a fantastic leader for our organization and someone who truly embodies the Olympic spirit and its values," said USOC Chairman Larry Probst. "I have no doubt that Norman will continue to live those values in whatever he does moving forward in life. He truly is an Olympian in every sense of the word."
In addition to his daily role, Bellingham led the USOC's search for a new headquarters and ultimately oversaw the development of a new state-of-the-art headquarters facility that the USOC opened in April 2010 in Colorado Springs, Colo. Bellingham also played a central role in the USOC's effort to develop plans for an Olympic television network. With the organization on firm footing, Bellingham felt that now was the right time for him to step down.
"Four and a half years ago I was offered a once-in-a-lifetime chance to be in a position to have an impact on the Olympic Movement in the U.S.," said Bellingham. "I am very grateful and honored to have had that opportunity. With the organization in a strong and stable place it is the right time for me to move on to new challenges. I'd like to thank Scott and Larry for their leadership and understanding as I transition to the next phase in my career."
Bellingham came to the USOC from Turner Broadcasting System, Inc., in Atlanta, Ga., where he served as senior vice president of strategic planning from 2002-06.
He also has considerable experience working with the USOC, and from 1993-96 Bellingham was responsible for analyzing and improving the effectiveness of USOC programs and services that support athletes and National Governing Bodies. He created and directed the $4.5 million Hometeam '96 Program, which was designed to maximize the medal performance of the U.S. Olympic Team at the 1996 Atlanta Games. Bellingham also helped design and implement a new financial support system that created a direct link between athletic performance and financial support – a system that is still utilized by the USOC.
From 1997-2001, Bellingham was a member of the USOC board of directors and executive committee. He also served as co-chairman of the PODIUM Program from 1997-2002 and the Athletes' Advisory Council (AAC) from 1993-2001.
At the 1988 Olympic Games in Seoul, Bellingham teamed with Greg Barton to win the gold medal in the two-man 1,000-meter sprint kayak race.
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