Four-time US Olympian Hunter Kemper, age-group multisport stars Donna Smyers and James Ward, and Mike Reilly, the ‘Voice of IRONMAN’, have been announced as the ninth induction class of the USA Triathlon Hall of Fame.
The USA Triathlon of Hall Fame serves to recognize, honour and commemorate those individuals and groups who have demonstrated excellence in every aspect of multisport — thereby inspiring others to elevate their own performance, participation and community involvement.
Founded in 2008, ithe USAT Hall of Fame has recognized the best performances and contributions in the sport of triathlon’s 41-year history. This year’s class brings the total number of inductees to 41.
“As always, the members of the Hall of Fame Executive Committee are proud to recognize the outstanding men and women who earn this honour,” said Jon Gray Noll, Chair of the USA Triathlon Hall of Fame Executive Committee. “We hope their achievements serve as inspiration to participants in multisport at every level.”
The four inductees will be honoured at a banquet in Cleveland on Thursday, August 9th, in conjunction with the USA Triathlon Age Group National Championships from August 11-12. The banquet will be held at Windows on the River starting at 17:30 ET. Individual tickets to this exclusive event are available now for US$75, and can be purchased at usatriathlon.org/hof.
Participants in the 2018 USA Triathlon Age Group National Championships will receive a discounted ticket price through to June 30th, 2018. Instructions for how to register with the discount will be communicated in upcoming pre-race newsletters.
Corporate or sponsor tables (10 seats) are also available for US$1,000, which includes a US$250 donation to the USA Triathlon Foundation. The purchase of a corporate or sponsor table also includes the company’s logo featured in the event program and registration platform, as well as an emcee mention during the ceremony. (Those interested in purchasing a table may contact Ellis Davis at ellis.davis[at]usatriathlon.org.)
Tickets will be available until Wednesday, August 1st, 2018, or until the 250-attendee limit is reached.
About the ninth induction class of the USA Triathlon Hall of Fame:
Hunter Kemper — Elite Athlete (Colorado Springs, CO)
Hunter Kemper is the most decorated US male triathlete in history. He is the only American and one of only two male triathletes in history to have represented his country at the first four Olympic triathlon competitions. He placed 17th in the sport’s debut in Sydney in 2000, ninth in Athens in 2004, seventh in Beijing in 2008 and 14th in London in 2012.
Kemper also represented the US at two Pan American Games, taking home silver in 1999 and gold in 2003. He earned a record seven USA Triathlon Elite National Championship titles and is one of only two American men to be ranked number one in the world, which he accomplished in 2005. He won the 2007 Haul to the Great Wall Series, was named the 2005 U.S. Olympic Committee Sportsman of the Year, and is a five-time US Olympic Committee Triathlete of the Year. Kemper continues to be involved in the multisport community, volunteering and promoting youth triathlons across the US and appearing at Olympic-themed community events in his hometown of Colorado Springs.
Mike Reilly — Contributor (San Diego, CA)
Through nearly 40 years of service, Mike Reilly has become the world’s most famous endurance sports announcer. Best known as the ‘Voice of IRONMAN’, Reilly has called the finishes of more than 160 IRONMAN triathlons, 1,200 races and more than 2 million athletes.
Reilly was a leading representative of Saucony shoes throughout the 1980s and supplied the Saucony product line to Road Runner Sports in Del Mar — now the largest running store in the US. He participated and announced some of the first triathlons ever held on Fiesta Island in San Diego in the 80s. His passion for triathlon and announcing grew; and in 1989 he announced his first IRONMAN World Championship in Kailua-Kona, Hawaii. He went on to spend the next 30 years announcing millions of athletes at the finish line of IRONMANs worldwide, and continues to do so today at age 64.
Donna Smyers — Age-Group Athlete (Adamant, VT)
Donna Smyers has competed in triathlon since 1985, topping age-group podiums for several decades and in all disciplines. Her resume includes four USA Triathlon Age Group National Championship titles, two ITU Age Group World Championship titles, six age-group IRONMAN World Championship wins and an IRONMAN 70.3 age-group world title.
Smyers was named USA Triathlon Masters Triathlete of the Year in 1998 and 2002. She suffered a quad tendon rupture and repair in late 2012, but was back on the podium at the national and international levels — including world titles at the ITU Age Group Sprint World Championships and IRONMAN 70.3 World Championship — by 2014. Off the race course, Smyers practices physical therapy in Adamant, Vermont, with a focus on athletes of all levels.
James Ward (Posthumous) — Age-Group Athlete (Seminole, FL)
James ‘Jim’ Ward was an icon in the USA Triathlon age-group community, winning six USA Triathlon Age Group National Championship titles and three age-group world titles. He began competing in triathlon in his late 60s — an inspiration to many older athletes — and won his age group as the most senior competitor at the 1994 IRONMAN World Championship at 77. In addition to his success in racing, he also contributed to the multisport community as chair of the Senior Task Force of the USA Triathlon Age Group Commission. A retired US Army Colonel and World War II veteran, Ward passed away in 2000 at 83 years of age. He was training for his next triathlon.
USA Triathlon Hall of Fame inductees by class:
(Beginning in 2016, the USA Triathlon Hall of Fame induction ceremony shifted to a biennial schedule.)
Induction Class I (Induction ceremony held Jan 17, 2009, in Colorado Springs, Colo.)
Judy Flannery (Age-Group Athlete)
Jon Gray Noll (Contributor)
Verne Scott (Contributor)
Karen Smyers (Elite Athlete)
Sheila Taormina (Elite Athlete)
Induction Class II (Induction ceremony held Feb 13, 2010, in Colorado Springs, Colo.)
Jim Curl (Contributor)
Barb Lindquist (Elite Athlete)
Paula Newby-Fraser (Elite Athlete)
Valerie Silk (Contributor)
Carl Thomas (Contributor)
Induction Class III (Induction ceremony held Jan 15, 2011, in Colorado Springs, Colo.)
Susan Bradley-Cox (Age-Group Athlete)
Dave McGillivray (Contributor)
Dave Scott (Elite Athlete)
Induction Class IV (Induction ceremony held May 10, 2012, in San Diego)
Mark Allen (Elite Athlete)
Ethel Autorino (Age-Group Athlete)
Bob Babbitt (Contributor)
Sally Edwards (Contributor)
Scott Molina (Elite Athlete)
Scott Tinley (Elite Athlete)
Induction Class V (Induction ceremony held Apr 18, 2013, in San Diego)
Missy LeStrange (Age-Group Athlete)
Jim MacLaren (Contributor)
Julie Moss (Contributor)
Induction Class VI (Induction ceremony held Jun 26, 2014, in Chicago)
Sister Madonna Buder (Age-Group Athlete)
John and Judy Collins (Contributors)
Mike Pigg (Elite Athlete)
Tom Warren (Contributor)
Induction Class VII (Induction ceremony held Apr 18, 2015, in Boston)
Bill Bell (Age-Group Athlete)
Tim DeBoom (Elite Athlete)
Dan Empfield (Contributor)
Karen McKeachie (Age-Group Athlete)
Carlos Moleda (Age-Group Athlete)
Susan Williams (Elite Athlete)
Induction Class VIII (Induction ceremony held Jan 16, 2016, in Colorado Springs, Colo.)
Harriet Anderson (Age-Group Athlete)
Roger Brockenbrough (Age-Group Athlete)
Ken Glah (Elite Athlete)
Siri Lindley (Elite Athlete)
Induction Class IX (Induction ceremony to be held Aug 9, 2018, in Cleveland, Ohio)
Hunter Kemper (Elite Athlete)
Mike Reilly (Contributor)
Donna Smyers (Age-Group Athlete)
James Ward (Age-Group Athlete)