Garth Gayle outsprints Olympian Quarrie in race for JAAA top job


Garth Gayle outsprints Olympian Quarrie in race for JAAA top job

Observer writer

Sunday, November 29, 2020

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Garth Gayle is the new president of the Jamaica Athletics Administrative Association (JAAA), this after sweeping aside the challenge of Donald Quarrie at the Annual General Meeting (AGM) and voting congress at National Arena in Kingston yesterday.

Gayle, who was the Honorary Secretary for the past 20 years, tallied 236 votes compared to a mere 28 votes for Quarrie.

Menawhile, Marie Tavares created history when she became the first female to be elected to the position of Honorary Secretary when she turned back the challenge of the independent candidate Anthony Davis.

Tavares, who ran on the Gayle slate, tallied 210 votes compared to 50 for Davis.

The only other contested position was that of Director of Records which was between incumbent Leroy Cooke, who is also a member of the Gayle slate. Cooke, who secured 135 votes, defeated independent challenger Wayne Long, who made a strong chellenge with 121 ballots.

The other positions which were filled uncontested were: Ian Forbes, first vice-president; Lincoln Eatmon, second vice-president; Michael Frater, third vice-president; Vilma Charlton, fourth vice-president; Ludlow Watt, treasurer and Brian Smith, assistant secretary.

Keith Wellington, Heleen Francis, Julette Parkes-Livermore, Ewan Scott, Judith Watt, Fedrick Dacres, Carl Bruce and Gregory Hamilton were all elected uncontested as committee members.

Gayle, who has branded his committee “Team Transformation”, was happy with how the election campaign was run.

“We ran for office under three simple pillars. We would be a a political team; we would not be involved in any mudslinging or any type of comments that would return to hurt the sport and the association that we all love and we would be respectful to each and every individual who would put themselves forward to challenge.

“We respect the three members of the association that offered themselves,” he said.

With track and field derailed by the Covid-19 virus since March, Gayle said it was time to work with the government to get things up and running again.

“We have got to get our sport back on track, so we must ensure that it is done in a safe and secure manner. We will be working along with the government, the Ministry of Sports and the Ministry of Health. So, in very short order, you will be hearing from us,” he promised.

As he continued to address the audience, most of whom were voting members of the association, Gayle asked for their continued support.

“We will be coming back to you members because, while you gave us your support and we thank you, we also know that the sport of track and field has strong critics. We want you to keep us on the balls of our feet, we need to hear from you, but I ask that when you critique us, you give us some solutions so that we can work together for the better of our sport,” said Gayle.

The new committee will serve from 2020-2024 and their first major event to oversee will be the Olympic Games in Tokyo, Japan, next June.

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