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Houston Named First Renewal for USOC Community Partner Program

HOUSTON – The Harris County – Houston Sports Authority today announced it has been named the first renewed Community Partner Program by the United States Olympic Committee. As part of the program, Houston will promote the U.S. Olympic and Paralympic movements by hosting national and international events, promoting USOC sport outreach initiatives, and supporting sanctioned programs, clubs and training sites in the community.

“This is a tremendous honor,” said HCHSA CEO Janis Schmees Burke. “Houston has amazing respect for the Olympic Movement and the work done by the USOC. We will be a true partner and do everything we can to foster the Olympic spirit in our community year-round.”

The region has been part of the Olympic and Paralympic movements since 1986 when it hosted the U.S. Olympic Festival. Since that time, Houston has hosted numerous events – including the 2000 U.S. Judo Championships; 2008 U.S. Olympic Team Trials – Boxing; 2008 U.S. Men’s Gymnastics Championships; 2010 U.S. Handball Championships; and 2011 Junior National Weightlifting Championships. Additionally, the area has hosted numerous national half marathon championships and the 2012 U.S. Olympic Team Trials – Marathon. Over the last three years, USA Rugby has hosted record-setting international test matches at BBVA Compass Stadium against Italy, Ireland and Scotland. As of 2010, the Karolyi Ranch – located just north of Houston – has been a designated U.S. Olympic Training Site for the U.S. Women’s National Gymnastics Team.

“We are pleased to renew our partnership with Houston Sports Authority,” said Alicia McConnell, USOC director of training sites and community partnerships. “Houston’s dedication to Team USA and youth outreach is exactly what we look for when developing partnerships to enhance the U.S. Olympic and Paralympic movements.”

To meet the designation requirements, Houston will continue to host at least one National Governing Body, U.S. Olympic or Paralympic event per year. The area will also work with local community organizations and schools to annually host three events that promote the USOC’s FLAME (Finding Leaders Among Minorities Everywhere) Program, the Olympic and Paralympic movements, and Olympic Day.

Up next, Houston will host the 2014 National Junior Olympic Track & Field Championships July 21-27 at Turner Stadium in Humble, Texas. More than 9,000 athletes are expected to participate.  

Author: Stephanie Weaver
Phone: (713) 308-5915