USATF Foundation awards $875,000 in Stephen A. Schwarzman Grant Funds; Schwarzman Increases Total Commitment to $2.75 Million

USATF Foundation awards $875,000 in Stephen A. Schwarzman Grant Funds; Schwarzman Increases Total Commitment to $2.75 Million

NEW YORK CITY – 2018 marks a unique year in the world of track & field – one where there is no World Championship or Olympic event for athletes to compete.  Given this circumstance, the USATF Foundation and Director Stephen A. Schwarzman view this as an important year for rising professional track & field athletes to rebuild, refocus, and set clear goals.  With hopes to assist these athletes in achieving their goals, the USATF Foundation and Chairman Bob Greifeld announced 25 Stephen A. Schwarzman grant awards in the amount of $35,000 each.

Last year, Stephen A. Schwarzman, Chairman, CEO and Co-Founder of Blackstone, became the largest individual donor to the USATF Foundation with an unprecedented $2.5 million donation in support of elite track & field athletes. This year, Mr. Schwarzman added an additional $250,000 to the grant pool to raise the amount of each individual Schwarzman grant to $35,000 in 2018. The $35,000 grants are the largest ever awarded by the USATF Foundation and are meant to provide financial support to the most promising track & field athletes as they train for the World Championships and Olympic Games.

“Stephen Schwarzman is ensuring these up and coming stars, who will compete in the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo, have the tools necessary to develop over the next few years. He is demonstrating his passion for the sport with generous and tangible gifts to assist these athletes with their daily expenses of coaching, training, equipment, medical treatment, recovery, and travel,” stated Greifeld.

It is a remarkable yet difficult task for the USATF Foundation Elite Athlete Grant Committee to consider the overwhelming amount of applications received each year.  The committee tries to identify athletes who have podium potential that will be enhanced by financial support.

“It is an honor to increase my contribution this year in order to support these up and coming athletes as they work to achieve their performance goals. Their individual stories of commitment and dedication to the sport of track & field are an inspiration. I look forward to seeing these young athletes realize their potential as they grow and compete, both on and off the field,” stated Schwarzman.

The 25 talented athletes to receive funding in the amount of $35,000 each are:

Christian TaylorTriple Jump
Darrell HillShot Put
Deanna PriceHammer
Erica BougardHeptathlon
Georganne Moline400m Hurdles
Gwen BerryHammer
Katie NageottePole Vault
Kendall Ellis400m
Kenny Selmon400m Hurdles
Keturah OrjiTriple Jump and Long Jump
Maggie EwenShot Put, Hammer, and Discus
Mason FinleyDiscus
Paul Chelimo5000m
Paul Dedewo400m
Phyllis Francis400m
Raven SaundersShot Put
Reggie JagersDiscus
Ronnie Baker100m
Ryan CrouserShot Put
Sandi MorrisPole Vault
Shadrack Kipchirchir10000m
Shakima Wimbley400m
T. J. Holmes400m Hurdles
Tori FranklinTriple Jump
Zack BazileLong Jump

The USATF Foundation provides a means to attract and guide funds to new and innovative track and field programs with an emphasis on providing opportunities for youth athletes, emerging and experienced elite athletes, along with guidance on future career paths. The Foundation depends upon donations from its Board of Directors, major gifts, and from generous fans of track & field.

Elite athletes are supported by the Foundation via monetary grants, career counseling (mentoring and jobs) and participation in Run With US!. Youth athletes are supported via monetary grants to youth clubs.

For more information, or to contribute to the USA Track & Field Foundation, Click Here or contact Tom Jackovic at (412) 398-2484 or