Nine individuals with diverse backgrounds in science, medicine, research, law and international sport have been elected to the Board of Directors for the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency, the new independent anti-doping agency for the Untied States, according the U.S. Olympic Committee president Bill Hybl. Representatives elected the board members from three segments of the USOC Board of Directors: the Public Sector, the Athletes’ Advisory Council (AAC) and the National Governing Body (NGB) Council.
The Public Sector representatives elected Barry Axelrod (Encinitas, Calif.), Dr. Jean Fourcroy (Bethesda, Md.), and Dr. Andrew Mecca (Tiburon, Calif.), Dr. Walter W. Shervington (New Orleans) and Olympic gold medallist Frank Shorter (Boulder, Colo.). The AAC elected past Olympians Peter Breen (Brookline, Mass.) and Kate Borg (Charleston, S.C.). Elected by the NGB Council were Dr. Richard Cohen (Atlanta) and Dr. Ralph Hale (Herndon, Va.).
Frank Marshall (Santa Monica, Calif.) and Baaron Pittenger (Colorado Springs, Colo.) co-chaired the USOC Select Task Force On Drug Externalization, which recommended the creation of an independent agency to conduct drug testing and oversee anti-doping measures on behalf of America’s Olympic athletes and hopefuls. The recommendation received unanimous approval from the USOC Board of Directors this past October in Colorado Springs, Colo., along with an additional allocation of $1.2 million to fund the agency. The USOC’s annual commitment will be in excess of $5 million, with $2 million earmarked for research. In addition, the U.S. Federal Government, with the support of General Barry McCaffrey, Director of the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy, has contributed $3 million to support the start-up of the new agency.
“For the last three decades, we have heard criticism from portions of the Olympic family that the United States was not living up to its mandate about anti-doping issues,” said Hybl. “Our independent agency should assure the Olympic movement that we are meeting our obligation in a direct and effective manner, and assure America’s athletes of our commitment.”
“The creation of an independent anti-doping agency by the USOC is one of the most significant accomplishments in its history,” added USOC Chief Executive Officer Norm Blake. “The individuals selected to the Board of Directors are outstanding in every respect, and further enhance the absolute credibility of this effort. This agency should signal to the worldwide Olympic family that the USOC is at the forefront of the anti-doping effort.”
“I am extremely pleased with the choices for the new Board of Directors,” said Marshall. “I am confident that this highly qualified, diverse group will successfully begin the challenge to create a level playing field for all Olympic athletes.”
“The Select Task Force is gratified by the USOC’s ready acceptance of its recommendations,” added Pittenger. “We believe that an independent agency, in which the USOC has voice but not control, will contribute substantially to both domestic and international confidence in U.S. anti-doping efforts.”
Biographical sketches on the members of the USADA Board of Directors:
Frank Shorter (Chair)
A two-time Olympian, Shorter won the gold medal in the marathon at the 1972 Olympic Games in Munich, Germany, and the silver medal at the 1976 Olympic Games in Montreal, Canada. A member of the U. S. Olympic Hall of Fame, Shorter has worked extensively in support of anti-doping initiatives worldwide and recently testified before the United States Congress on this issue.
Dr. Ralph W. Hale (Vice Chair)
A member of the U.S. delegation staff for four Olympic Games (1988, 1992, 1994, and 1996), Dr. Hale has served on the USOC Board of Directors since 1984 as a representative of U.S. Water Polo. His extensive work in international sport includes serving as a member of the USOC/USSR Anti-Doping Commission from 1989-92. Dr. Hale currently serves as vice chair of the USOC’s Sports Medicine Committee and was a USOC vice president from 1993 to 1996.
Kate Hendrickson Borg (Secretary)
A member of the 1992 U.S. Olympic Team in the sport of canoe/kayak, Hendrickson Borg served as an athlete liaison and athlete services coordinator for the 1997 World University Games and the 1999 Pan American Games. Hendrickson Borg, who was a member of the U.S. Canoe/Kayak National Team from 1988 to 1996, remains active as a competitor in road races, marathons, and triathlons.
Barry Axelrod (Treasurer)
A graduate of UCLA Law School, Axelrod is an attorney specializing in sports, entertainment, and business law. He represents such athletes as Olympians Willie Banks, Julianne McNamara, and Mary Lou Retton.
Peter Breen, ATC
A member of the 1992 U.S. Olympic Team in the sport of ice dancing, Breen has worked as a certified athletic trainer for the past six years. He is currently completing requirements for a master’s degree in physical therapy. Breen previously worked in the physical therapy department of Providence Medical Center in Portland, Oregon, and was an assistant athletic trainer at the Braintree (Mass.) Rehabilitation Hospital.
Dr. Walter W. Shervington
A nationally respected educator and lecturer in the field of psychiatry, Dr. Shervington is President of the National Medical Association. With more than 30 years in professional experience, Dr. Shervington has worked with psychiatric and medical programs at both the state and federal levels. He currently serves as the Chief Executive Officer of the New Orleans Adolescent Hospital.
Dr. Richard W. Cohen
A former member of the Doping Control Commission for USA Weightlifting and the U.S. Bobsled and Skeleton Federation, Dr. Cohen served as chairman of the Doping Control Commission for the 1996 Olympic Games in Atlanta, Georgia. He was also supervisor of doping control for Alpine events at the 1998 Olympic Winter Games in Nagano, Japan, and served as an advisor on doping control to the Nagano Olympic Organizing Committee. A noted orthopedic surgeon, Dr. Cohen is chairman of the Wellstar Task Force on Total Joint Replacement.
Dr. Jean Fourcroy
A medical officer with the Food and Drug Administration in the Division of Clinical Laboratory Devices, Dr. Fourcroy is regarded as an expert on the subject of anabolic steroids, androgens, and their alternatives. A noted clinician, researcher, and scientist, Dr. Fourcroy has worked extensively with the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency on the development of regulatory and educational formats both domestically and abroad.
Dr. Andrew Mecca
The director of the California State Department of Alcohol and Drug Programs since 1991, Dr. Mecca has assisted in the development of programs designed to curb substance abuse in more than 15 countries. An accomplished triathlete and marathoner, Dr. Mecca also serves as chairman of the Governor’s Policy Council on Drug and Alcohol Abuse for the State of California.
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