COLORADO SPRINGS, CO., July 16. FORMER Olympic swimming gold medalist Donna De Varona, now 55 and a prominent television broadcaster, has tossed her hat into the ring to become the next United States Olympic Committee president.
De Varona thus joins current USOC secretary and its acting president, Marty Mankamyer; former USOC treasurer and longtime activist Larry Hough; and Paul
George, a USOC vice president as candidates for the committee's top job.
De Varona, who won the 400 IM at Rome in 1960, said she is putting forth her candidacy because "they want somebody who brings a lot of the outside in."
She currently resides in Connecticut and has been a fixture on sports TV for many years.
Mantkamyer, 68, is a Colorado Springs real estate executive and took over as acting president when Sandra Baldwin resigned the position last May after
discrepancies surfaced about her USOC biography.
Mankmayer's base of support, it is reported, is the athletes, but she can also reach out to the various National Governing Sports (sports federations)
because she is "a soccer mom" who has long been active in the U.S. soccer federation.
George is 68 and a prominent Boston attorney. He has long been active in the management of winter sports and narrowly lost the presidential election to Baldwin two years ago.
Hough, 58, who lives in suburban Washington, D.C., was a silver medalist at the Mexico City Olympics (1968) in rowing. He served as USOC treasurer from 1980-84, and similar to the others has long been involved in USOC affairs. He was also close to Peter Ueberroth and has retained those ties to the man who headed the Los Angeles Olympic Organizing Committee.
From 1990-97 Hough headed Sallie Mae, the Student Loan Marketing Assn., and for the last three years has run Arlington, Va.-based Sato Travel.
His nomination papers were signed by Anita DeFrantz, an Olympic bronze medalist in rowing at Montreal a quarter-century ago and the senior member of the
International Olympic Committee in the United States.
THE USOC president will serve until December of 2004. He or she will be chosen by the USOC Executive Committee that is scheduled to meet July 29 in
Chicago. Its goal will be the selection of one name to forward by mail ballot to the 115-member Board of Directors. A simple majority (58 votes) will be necessary to confirm the Executive Committee's choice.
– Bill Bell