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Omaha Running Club Hall of Fame

Recognizing Local Running Legends and Influencers

Meet the Inductees

The Hall of Fame annually honors individuals who have significantly contributed to the Omaha Running Community. The nominees are recognized at the Annual Meeting.

2018

2018

NANCY SUTTON MOSS

Race Director

Nancy Sutton Moss has been involved with the Lincoln Marathon for over 40 years, has been the Race Director for the last 34 years and is one of a very few remaining volunteer marathon race directors in the country!  Under Nancy’s leadership, the event has grown to over 13,500 participants and registrations have sold out every year for the last 10 years. Nancy listens to the runners and volunteers and incorporates their suggestions into the event—cups with lids and straws at the aid stations; a FREE pasta meal on Saturday and a FREE post-race lunch on Sunday; adding pacers for both the full and half marathon; implementing the use of technology for live tracking of runners; adding a women’s style shirt for the female participants; various types of apparel for purchase at the expo; expanding the expo from one to two days; and finishing on the 50 yard line of Memorial Stadium. Nancy recruits volunteers to assist with various aspects of the event, gives them guidance, direction, resources and support to successfully carry out their duties. Nancy has made the Lincoln Marathon one of premier running events in the Midwest.

2018

CHRISTY NIELSEN

Competitor

Christy has been a fixture at local races since the mid 1990’s. She is a 3-time Olympic Trials Marathon qualifier and has completed over 50 marathons, over 200 half marathons and eight ultra distance races of 50K to 50 miles. Christy won the Quad Cities Marathon, Des Moines Marathon, Little Rock Marathon, Birmingham Marathon, Memphis Marathon, AL Marathon and the Lincoln Marathon three times.  Her marathon PR of 2:43 was set at the Memphis Marathon when she qualified for the 2000 Olympic Marathon Trials. Christy is a multi-year winner of the Omaha Corporate Cup 10K and placed as high as second overall and 1stfemale overall in her ultra races.  Christy has been one of the most talented female runners in the Omaha area for the last 25 years.  She now utilizes her Doctor of Physical Therapy degree from Creighton University as a therapist to specialize in treating running injuries.

2017

2017

TONY JONES

Competitor/Volunteer

In the late 1980's, the Omaha Running Club was struggling. Many of the original board members were burned out. Tony stepped up and volunteered to be the club President. He would end up running the club for four years -- and stayed active on the Board of Directors for ten years. Throughout the 80's and 90's, Tony was assistant race director for many of the popular races including the Chiller Challenge and the Festival of Races. Tony was a regular on the road race circuit and was a strong competitor. He ran 31 marathons, including a personal best at Lincoln of 3 hours and 17 seconds.

2017

HARVEY KUNZ

Competitor/Volunteer

Harvey was one of the runners that stepped-up in the 1980's and kept the club moving forward. He has continued to volunteer, working the finish line at ORC races for decades. As a competitive runner, Harvey traveled around the country running at least one marathon each month for many years. For over 30 years, Harvey was a fixture at ORC events -- either as a competitor or a volunteer.

2016

2016

TIM DOOLING

Tim is an outstanding runner. He dominated the Omaha running scene for much of the 1980’s. Tim has an impressive collection of victories in the area and was the RRCA National Champion at one point – winning the 5 mile event. Most area runners around during the 1980’s and 1990’s agree that Tim Dooling had the most impressive running career in the ORC history.

2016

JOSE BADILLO

Jose is one of the top runners in his age group and has done well locally, regionally and even nationally. He has won the Cornhusker State Games, the Nebraska Senior Games and won age group awards at the National Senior Games. Jose has completed the London Marathon on several occasions. He is also a loyal volunteer for the Omaha Running Club.

2015

2015

TOM WHITAKER

Tom has been the President of the Omaha Running Club for the past 13 years and is very active in the running community, regularly providing timing and scoring support for races. During that time, the club's membership has grown and the club has gone from sponsoring two annual races to 11, as well as providing eight free fun runs based on holiday themes. Tom's leadership has provided a stable environment for the club. He has implemented governance principles such as an annual president's performance review, an annual board performance review and a confidentiality agreement for Board members. The Board has also adopted code of conduct and conflict of interest policies. Tom is the race director for the Heartland Marathon and is the Nebraska State representative for the RRCA, and is a Certified RRCA Race Director. In addition, Tom has been a runner for over 30 years.

2015

DAREN KONDA

Daren has been active in the Omaha running community for several years. He has been on the Omaha Running Club Board for 14 years – and has served as the Vice President for most of those years. He has organized and directed the popular holiday fun-run series which offers local runners a chance to meet others in the running community at low-key, free events. Daren has been a valuable resource for the Omaha community providing leadership and serving as the Director for many races which promote Omaha's cultural and sporting events, such as the Road to Omaha CWS 5k and the Holland Run. Daren is also a very competitive runner and is frequently near the front of the pack at local road races. He has completed several marathons including the Boston Marathon on several occasions.

2014

2014

ROXI ERICKSON

An outstanding long distance runner - Roxi was recognized in Runner's World magazine on several occasions for not only her marathon times and wins - but also her durability and ability to run multiple quality marathons per year. Roxi has an impressive collection of Lincoln Marathon victories as well as many in high profile local races. She has been the dominant female runner in the Omaha and Lincoln area since the early 1990s.

2014

RON OLSON

Ron Olson has been competing in area road races since the 1970s. He is the only person to run in every single Lincoln Marathon -- 37 to date. At one time, Ron was also a "go to" race director for Omaha civic-groups and charities. Over an 8-year period beginning in the late 1980s, Ron averaged 2 to 3 events per month during the busy road race season. Some of his more memorable runs included the Miracle Hills Mile and the Literacy Run. Ron introduced the "Clydesdale Division" to Omaha which helped attract runners who would otherwise avoid road races.

2013

2013

JIM McMAHON

Jim McMahon was one of the early pioneers in organized running Omaha. He was the second president of the Plains Track Club. At the time he was the cross country coach at UNO. Jim has been the track coach at Midlands College for 36 years. His name comes up in any discussion with runners from the 70’s. Many early ORC members claim that without Jim, there would not have been a Plains Track Club (later renamed Omaha Running Club).

2013

GARY WASSERMAN

Gary Wasserman was one of the most dominant runners in Nebraska for many years. A former Nebraska Wesleyan athlete, Gary was inducted to the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Association (USTFCCCA) Division III Track & Field Athletic Hall of Fame in 2012. Gary, a 14-time USTFCCCA All-American, is the only man in Division III history to win three indoor NCAA 5000-meter crowns – he did so with three straight wins in 1991, 1992 and 1993. Gary won the 1992 NCAA Cross Country title and was a three-time All-American in cross country. He was a four-year NCAA scorer in the indoor 5,000, outdoor 5,000 and 10,000 meters and is one of ten men in D-III history to be a four-time All-American in the same event indoors and outdoors. Gary is in the all-time Division III top ten in the indoor 5,000 and outdoor 10,000. The Grand Island, NE, native still owns three NWU school records (indoor 5,000; outdoor 5,000 and 10,000) and is also the NWU record holder for the cross country team’s 8,000 meter home course at Pioneers Park. He earned CoSIDA Academic All-America honors in 1992 and 1992. Gary was inducted into the NWU Athletics Hall of Fame in 2003. The press release for his induction into the HOF has the following quote: Gary Wasserman, originally from Grand Island, NE, is the most accomplished distance runner ever to compete for Nebraska Wesleyan.

2012

2012

ERIN SULLIVAN

Erin Sullivan has been a volunteer and race director in the Omaha running community for over 28 years. She was an Omaha Running Club board member for eight years and is a past president of the club. Erin started the “Ladies of the Evening” women’s running group in 1987. She is also a member of the Omaha Corporate Cup Hall of Fame. She received the UNO Alumni Award for Excellence in Public Service in 2007. She is the Chairperson for US Masters Swimming and was the Event Coordinator for the US Masters National Swim Meet in 2012. As a competitor she won the Omaha Corporate Cup Run 10k in 1985 as well as many local running races, triathlons and swimming events. Erin competed in the Hawaiian Ironman Triathlon in 1987.

2012

RONN BAKER

Ronn Baker has been the top competitor in his age group in the Nebraska/Iowa area for the past 25 years. In 2010, Ronn set the age group record for the 70-75 year-old age group at the highly regarded Bix 7 in Davenport, Iowa - where he has consistently won his age group for many years. Over the years, aside from his age group, he has also been one of the most dominant Masters runners in the Midwest.

2011

2011

JIMMY HALL

Jimmy Hall was one of the most dominant and consistent competitors on the Nebraska and Iowa road racing circuit throughout the late 1970’s and 1980’s. A Nebraska Class B State Champion in both cross country and track – Jimmy went on to run both sports at the University of Nebraska at Omaha where he was an All American in each. While at UNO, his cross country team won the Northcentral Conference and finished 5th in the country. Jimmy ran a lot of road races – and he won most of them. His personal best in the 10K was 29:52. An automobile accident shortened his running career. Jimmy was the race director for the popular El Bees “pairs” race in Waterloo for several years and was also the Assistant cross country coach at Paul VIth High School and a graduate assistant coach for both track and cross country at UNO.

2011

GREG CARLBERG

Greg Carlberg was one of the pioneers of the Plains Track Club and was arguably the areas fastest and most accomplished distance runner ever. Among his career highlights, Greg won the Drake Relays marathon, competed in the Olympic Marathon Trials and was Nebraska’s first sub-four minute miler. A search on the internet shows that Greg ranks 205th on the all-time list of fastest American milers. He ran that time in Houston on February 13, 1971. Greg was an All-American at the University of Nebraska in 1971 where he placed 5th in the NCAA outdoor track meet.

2010

2010

STAN SHIRK

Stan Shirk has been a long-time ORC volunteer. He was first elected to the ORC board in 1995 and served on the board through 2004. During that time, he held Secretary, Membership Chairman and Executive Director positions. He has been a Technical Advisor to the Club since 2004 and has been the resident expert in providing scoring expertise. He has scored virtually all of the major events in the Omaha area, including college and high school cross country meets. Stan is also a competitive runner and has often won his age group in local races – but his volunteer efforts, particularly scoring events, has limited his road racing in recent years. His personal best in the 10K (35:11) and the marathon (2:48) are indicative of his running prowess. Stan founded the ORC Marathon Training Clinic in 2001 and served as Director for the clinic for four years. He also founded and directed the first ORC Volunteer Recognition Dinner. Stan also was the Race Director for the YMCA Masters event from 1989 to 1998. In 2004, a full-page article in the Omaha World Herald (complete with color photos) highlighted Stan’s running experiences while deployed in Iraq.

2010

JOHN HAWKINS

John Hawkins was an outstanding runner at UNO – John was a formidable competitor in the Omaha area during the late 70’s and early 80’s. One of the initial members of the Elmwood Park Track Club/UNO Track Club. Recognized as the founder of the Plains Track Club. Directed many of the early road races. His efforts set the tone for the future.

2009

2009

BEA SIDES

Bea Sides entered the HOF as a competitor and a volunteer/race director. Bea has been the race director of the Go Girl Run for 12 years. She has been a leader of the Ladies of the Evening, monthly running group for 18 years. Most importantly Bea has taught hundreds of women to run through the Step into Running program.

2009

CLIFF KARTHAUSER

Cliff Karthauser has been called the most gifted runner from Nebraska. He ran a 2:16 at the 1980 Marathon Trials. Cliff was a four time All American at Nebraska Wesleyan University. He was the NCAAA College Division six mile champion. Cliff is on the Board of Directors for the Special Olympics Foundation, and has served as a volunteer coach for the Omaha Skutt cross country team.

2009

LOU SOUKUP

Lou Soukup has been the most prolific runner in the Omaha area. Lou has run 50 or more races per year for 20 years. He has run more than 1400 races and earned over 1000 awards, including more than 60 wins. Lou has been a fierce competitor in the masters category. Lou was involved in the early organization of running in Omaha. He was a member of the Plains Track Club, and a founder of the Omaha Running Club.

2007

2007

TIM HENDRICKS

Competitor/Coach

Tim is one of the pioneers of organized running in Omaha.  He was one of the key figures in the Elmwood Park Track Club which would eventually evolve into the Omaha Running Club.  Tim was a world class competitor and a member of the US cross country team that competed in France.  He also ran in the 1972 U.S. Olympic trials.  Tim finished second in 1976 in the U.S. Track and Field Marathon Championships.  Tim recently retired after 19 years as the head track and cross country coach at UNO. As a coach, he was named North Central Conference coach of the year five times and has coached more than 120 All-American performers including two national champions.

2007

DICK BURROWS

Competitor/Volunteer

Dick was one of the pioneers in the Omaha running movement and was a leader in the original Plains Track Club.  A highly competitive runner, Dick completed each of the first 22 Omaha Marathons. Dick has also served many years as a director for the Omaha Running Club.

2007

GARY JULIN

Competitor

A prolific competitor, Gary was a regular on the Omaha road racing circuit for nearly three decades.  At the time of this induction, Gary had completed well over 1,000 road races with over 100 overall wins and over 800 age group victories. During that time, Gary had finished over 165 marathons with more than 115 completed in less than three hours. Gary passed away in 2015.

2007

LEONARD VAVRA

Competitor

“Crazy” Leonard is one of the most recognized and popular runners in the Omaha area.  His legendary howls have been a staple at local events for nearly three decades.  For many runners, seeing and hearing Crazy Leonard was often the highlight of their race.  Leonard has competed in 100 marathons over the course of his career.

2006

2006

MIKE EWOLDT

Race Director and Volunteer

Mike and his brother Jim opened Peak Performance in 1994. Since that time, Mike has been one of the key figures in the road race scene in Omaha.  Mike has filled a void for organizations looking for help and expertise when sponsoring a run or walk.  Mike sponsors many races each year – but he is also a key resource for other charitable groups looking for race assistance. Mike opens his store to activities like the ORC Marathon Clinic and packet pick-up for many other area events. Although Mike is relatively new to the Omaha running scene, his contribution has been huge.

2006

TODD NOTT

Race Organizer, Competitor, Coach

Todd has been one of the top distance runners in this area for many years. A versatile competitor, he has won races and set course records in distances from the 5K to ultra-marathons.  Todd has been the head cross country coach at Plattsmouth High School since 1992 and is also the assistant head track coach.  As a race director, Todd has organized several popular events.  His summer cross country series has grown each year and is a vital part of the training scene for many high school runners.  As a competitor, coach and volunteer, Todd sets an excellent example for young runners.

2005

2005

CHUCK COOPER

Race Director/Volunteer/Coach

Chuck has been a vital force in the Omaha Running community for many years. He was a key volunteer, leader and spokesman of the Omaha Running Club - serving as Club President. He also directed many Omaha area road races, and most recently has been developing young runners as a high school cross country and track coach.

2005

CRAIG CHRISTIANS

Competitor/Coach/Race Director

Craig has been a vital force in the Omaha Running community for many years. As a race director, his No Frills series has provided an opportunity for runners to compete throughout the winter. He is a dedicated coach at both the youth level and the high school level. And he has been and remains one of the fastest runners in the Omaha area.

2004

2004

KARLENE ERICKSON

Competitor

One of the early female competitors in the area - Karlene was also one of the fastest ever. After a successful running career at the University of Nebraska, she was a top finisher in the 1984 Olympic Marathon Trials.

2004

MICK FREEMAN

Race Director

Mick has been a long-time race director organizing one of the areas first events - the CB 13 in 1973. His Lake Manawa Series has provided runners an opportunity to compete throughout the winter for over 30 years.

2004

JOHN PETERSEN

Race Director

John is the race director for the Richfield Run. His run has served as a model for other local runs since 1978. The Richfield Café Run is known for its traditional shot gun start and hand crafted 10 mile Run Nebraska walnut plaque awards. John has contributed run proceeds to non-profit organizations including Make-A-Wish foundation.

2004

FRANK PERRONE

Race Director

Frank was one of the pioneers of organized running in Omaha. He and his wife Trudy directed many  popular road races including the Lady Runner which was the first all-female road race in the area.

2004

JOHN THOMAS

Race Director

John was one of the early leaders of the Plains Track Club.  As a long-time race organizer, he has directed events such as the Omaha Riverfront Marathon and the Omaha Corporate Cup.

2004

JILL GARLOCK

Competitor

Jill was one of the pioneers of competitive road racing in Omaha. An outstanding athlete, she was also one of the first females to compete in the Hawaii Ironman Triathlon

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