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Jamaican professor offers mediator service to the BAAA

FRED STURRUP

Published: May 30, 2013

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Professor Trevor Hall Ph.D. is a Jamaican-born citizen of the United States with worldwide exposure. He speaks and reads Portuguese and reads French and Spanish. His education background includes the Johns Hopkins University Ph.D.; the Universidade de Lisboa, Faculdade de Letras: Arizona State University B.S.c., M.A., Political Science, and San Gabriel Academy, Elementary School, Balcalava, Jamaica. His connection to sports is deep. Professor Hall was All-American, Track and Field University Division in 1975; Penn Relays triple jump champion University Division in 1972; Western Athletic Champion in 1972 and runner-up in 1974 and 1975. Professor Hall has been keeping up with the executive controversy within the Bahamas Association of Athletic Associations.

The Bahamas is being identified more and more these days primarily as a sports nation. Worldwide, observers closely view what’s going on in sports in the Commonwealth of The Bahamas. The ongoing executive controversy in the Bahamas Association of Athletic Associations (BAAA) is a case in point.

Professor Trevor Hall, a consultant in education and a full-time lecturer, remains keenly in tune with regional and world sports. He informs that when he worked in Liberia during the 1980s, he was able to help settle a major sports issue. Universities in Liberia, he informed, “were not participating in athletic competition because of a long-standing feud.”

This once talented triple jumper and coach is now offering his service to the BAAA.

“As a professor of history and political science (Ph.D., Johns Hopkins University, 1993) and a track and field coach, as well as a former athlete, I offer my services to serve as a neutral mediator… if one is needed. Sometimes, opposing forces need an independent czar, one who could look at a situation in an impartial manner, without bias and render a decision. I performed such a function during the 1980s, when I worked in Liberia. As a Jamaican, who was not involved in the dispute, I was able to bring the two sides together,” informed Professor Hall.

No doubt, there are individuals right here in The Bahamas who can serve the same purpose. An outsider, however might go over better. Recently, the presence of an official observer from the International Olympic Committee (IOC), in the person of Richard Peterkin, resulted in the Bahamas Olympic Committee’s (BOC) General Assembly being fully accepted. He reported to the IOC and the proceedings of the assembly were officially endorsed.

The BOC issues ended and now the new administration is moving on. There is a general view that the BAAA needs to get to a point very soon whereby it moves on. With the growing interest outside of the country, perhaps bringing someone like Professor Hall into the picture could be the solution.

Are the two BAAA sides willing to accept a mediator? Presently, based on how they have been responding, a compromised position is not a priority for them. The time might indeed be appropriate for the IAAF to get directly involved.

President Lamine Diack is a no-nonsense individual. While he obviously advocates national organizations solving their differences before they get totally out of hand, he has not been shy during his presidency to act when necessary in the interest of the honor and credibility of track and field.

Professor Hall’s declared interest is a new dimension to the BAAA episode, worth consideration.

• To respond to this sports feature, kindly contact Fred Sturrup at sturrup1504@gmail.com.


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