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Hightower steps down as USATF board chair; Miller selected to serve


INDIANAPOLIS -- USATF President Stephanie Hightower on Wednesday stepped down as chairman of the board, with the board selecting Steve Miller to replace her as chair.


This August, Hightower will stand as USATF’s nominee for election to the IAAF Council. The upcoming IAAF election and the transition of her role was the impetus for her decision to resign as board chair.


“As USATF President and our candidate for Council, I wish to help provide continuity and stability in leadership change as we move into the next phase of the IAAF election process,” said Hightower, who as USATF President will assume the role of board vice chair, in accordance with USATF bylaws. “Recognizing that to be successful at the IAAF I must devote significant time and effort to that endeavor, I submit my resignation as chairman of the USATF Board of Directors. It has been a true honor and privilege to serve as chairman, and I look forward to continuing to serve on the board as President and to actively pursuing a new role for USATF at the IAAF.”


Hightower was elected as USATF President at the organization’s 2008 Annual Meeting in Reno, Nevada. At its first meeting in March 2009, a newly constituted USATF board elected Hightower as chair. She was re-elected as USATF President in 2012, and the board most recently re-elected her to serve another two-year term as chair at the 2014 Annual Meeting in Anaheim, Calif. Miller will serve the remainder of that term as board chair, through 2016.


Hightower is CEO of the Columbus (Ohio) Urban League, the first woman to hold the position, and previously was Vice President for Institutional Advancement for the Columbus College of Art & Design. A former world-class hurdler, she has served USATF in countless capacities, beginning with USATF’s Athletes Advisory Committee and including as USATF women's track & field chair and as team leader, team manager and chef de mission for Team USA at international competitions. During her athletic career, she was named to the roster of 12 national teams, held American and world records in the hurdles, and was a member of the 1980 Olympic Team. As a civic leader in her hometown of Columbus, Hightower served for five years as President of the Columbus Board of Education. She recently received the Distinguished Service Award from her alma mater, The Ohio State University, currently serves as an Advisory Officer for US Bank and is a member of several education and cultural boards.


A board member since 2009, Miller is CEO of Agassi Graf Holdings, the Andre Agassi Foundation for Education, and BILT by Agassi and Reyes. He previously served as the Executive Chairman of the Board for Power Plate International, President and CEO of the Professional Bowlers Association, Director of Global Sports Marketing for Nike, adjunct professor at the University of Oregon Warsaw School of Sports Marketing, and Director of Athletics for Kansas State University. He has more than two decades' experience as a high school and collegiate track and cross country coach, is a five-time NCAA Coach of the Year and is a member four Halls of Fame, including the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association Hall of Fame.


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