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Gary Abbott named Director of Special Projects for USA Wrestling



Abbott named Director of Special Projects for USA Wrestling Longtime USA Wrestling employee Gary Abbott of Colorado Springs, Colo. has been named to the newly created position of Director of Special Projects for the organization. USA Wrestling is the national governing body for amateur wrestling in the United States. Abbott has worked for USA Wrestling for over 12 years, serving as the Director of Communications. He has directed a variety of USA Wrestling communications activities, including the organization's publications, media relations, promotions and public relations programs. In his new position, new responsibilities will include directing specific projects for the organization, including the Amateur Wrestling Alliance, Title IX, the development of women's wrestling and media training. Abbott will continue to manage and edit USA Wrestling's publications, including USA Wrestler, Link On-Line and the Complete Coach. He will also handle USA Wrestling's corporate communications program. Abbott will provide support USA Wrestling's internet and media relations efforts, as needed. "Gary's deep background in the sport and his outstanding professional skills make him perfect for this position," said USA Wrestling Executive Director Rich Bender. "This new position provides USA Wrestling with the opportunity to put a focus on key projects and issues that affect our organization and the sport." "I am excited about the opportunity to make an impact directing some important projects for the organization and the sport," said Abbott. "As wrestling grows, it faces many new opportunities and challenges. I will be able to give the extra attention and support to these programs, with the goal of strengthening the sport." "I'm excited about finding creative approaches to building wrestling's future," he said. "The Amateur Wrestling Alliance is a developing partnership that is designed to make each of the organizations more efficient and successful. The challenges facing college wrestling due to federal regulations and interpretations must continue to be addressed. Formulating a strategic approach to the development of women's wrestling could help bring wrestling to many more young people. I will be seeking input from all levels of the sport to move these projects forward." Abbott has helped expand media coverage for the sport of wrestling. He was worked at most of the major wrestling events in the United States and the world, including four Olympic Games. He was a U.S. Olympic Committee Press Officer at the 1992, 1996 and 2000 Olympics, and a USA Wrestling Press Officer at the 1988 Olympics. He has also worked at three Goodwill Games, five Senior World Championships, nine World Cups, three U.S. Olympic Festivals, the Junior and Cadet World Championships, 12 U.S. National Championships and a number of other major competitions. He received the 1992 Bob Dellinger Award as the wrestling writer of the year. Abbott was one of the three founders of the National Wrestling Media Association (NWMA) in 1988, and served as its president from 1991-92. He has received the 1991 NWMA Publicist of the Year and the 1996 NWMA Publication of the Year awards for his work at USA Wrestling. Abbott has served as chairperson of the National Wrestling Hall of Fame's screening committee, and has served as a voter for the Distinguished Members of the Hall of Fame. He has served as a member of the steering committee of the Olympic Public Relations Association. He also served as staff liaison for the Joint Task Force for Weight Management in 1998. Abbott joined USA Wrestling after working five years as the editor of the national magazine Wrestling Masters. He worked as publicist for the National Wrestling Coaches Association for two years, and founded the NWCA Div. I Coaches Poll. He was also the founder of the ASICS Tiger High School Wrestling All-American Team in 1985, and has served on the selection committee for 16 years. He received a bachelor's degree in journalism from Boston University in 1982. He was a starter on Boston University's varsity wrestling team for four years. He is originally from Centerport, N.Y.
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