Steve Prefontaine

International Track Star - Running Legend

Prefontaine Athletic Award


In 1984, the Bay Area Chamber of Commerce President asked the Prefontaine Memorial Committee to establish an annual award to a Coos Bay/North Bend student-athlete to be presented at the Chamber's Annual Awards Banquet.

Beginning in 1985, the Prefontaine Memorial Committee has honored outstanding student-athletes whose accomplishments most closely reflected the excellence in athletics demonstrated by the late Steve Prefontaine.

Steve Prefontaine grew up in Coos Bay, OR and graduated from Marshfield High School in 1969. He was a two-time State Cross County Champion, two-time State 2-Mile Champion and also won the State Championship in the mile his senior season. Also during his senior season, Steve established a new National 2-mile record with a time of 8:41.5 at a meet in Corvallis and that record stood for many years. He capped his high school career by placing 4th in the 3-mile at the AAU National Championships, where he was chosen to compete internationally on the USA team.

Steve went on to the University of Oregon to run under the legendary Bill Bowerman. During his years at Oregon he won three National Collegiate Cross County Championships and four 3-mile/5,000-meter Collegiate Outdoor titles. In 1972, Steve won the Olympic Trials 5,000-meters race in front of a standing room only crowd of adoring fans at Hayward Field in Eugene. Later that fall, Steve represented the United States at the Summer Olympic Games of Munich, Germany where he finished 4th in one the most stirring 5,000-meter races in Olympic history. At the time of his tragic death in May of 1975, he held every American distance record from 2,000-meters to 10,000-meters.

Each year, the Prefontaine Memorial Committee asks the athletic directors of Marshfield High School and North Bend High School to submit the names of up to three worthy candidates for our consideration. Although the award is given primarily for excellence in athletics, we also look for excellence in character, involvement in the community outside of school activities and academics.

2009-2010 Prefontaine Athletic Award


Presented by John S Burles
Bay Area Chamber of Commerce Banquet
January 28, 2011

Good Evening.

On behalf of the Prefontaine Committee, I am honored to present the Prefontaine Athletic Award for the 27th time.

Please acknowledge Steve Prefontaine's mother, Elfriede, accompanied by Roger and Denise Gould, present this evening to honor this year's recipient.

I was 'sucked' into the Pre Committee by my devious buddy, Jay Farr. He baited me into setting up a timing system to produce reliable and timely race results for the annual 10K in memory of Steve. We grew up in the same neighborhood, as I lived on 11th street, Jay lived on 10th street and Steve lived on 9th street. The Pre Committee is fun, as we have the pleasure of directing the net proceeds from the race to the support of Cross Country and Track & Field programs in Coos County. The Committee, in Steve's memory, is able to support our fine athletes in this county through program funding and scholarship funding.

For the past 27 years the Prefontaine Committee has partnered with the Chamber to honor our area's youth in the company of the Chamber honorees that have made exemplary contributions to our communities.

I am pleased to present the 27th Prefontaine Athletic Award to an all around outstanding student/athlete, Brooke Davison. Brooke graduated from North Bend High School this past June.

Brooke comes from a family of superb athletes. Her mother, Julie, coached SWOYA track for years. Her father, Jon, was a big part of her pole vault success, as Jon has coached 5 state champions in the event.. Jon took his cue from the late Stan Solomon to help make athletes from Coos County a huge force to be reckoned with in the state pole vault competitions. Brooke is part of this legacy of champions, along with her four siblings. Cale, Heidi, Sarah and Lane. Heidi, here tonight, was all state basketball on North Bend's championship team. Her brother Lane was a state champion vaulter as a junior. I relay this history because champions are produced by ability, work, determination, fine coaching and support from family. Brooke Davison is an example of this unending process.

Brooke's pedigree includes an all around prowess in track. She won the 4A girls Pole Vault competition as a sophomore. She placed 2nd as a Junior and a senior in this hotly contested event. As a senior she added points to North Bend's team effort by placing 3rd in the Long Jump and 5th in the Triple Jump.

The list goes on. Brooke plays the game of basketball. Last year Brooke was First Team All State 4A Girls Basketball and the Far West League Most Valuable player. She average 17 points per game. She was a three year starter. She was the team leader. She was fun to watch.

In the fall Brooke played soccer. In her senior year she was a key part of the first state playoff girls soccer team for North Bend High School. Brooke played 3 sports at a very high level all four years of high school. She won the NBHS 2010 Julia Stouffer Award as the Outstanding Female Athlete for the year. She won awards as math student of the year and English student of the year. Brooke chose to attend Lane CC so that she could participate in two sports, basketball and track. Brooke intends to be an elementary school teacher upon graduation.

On behalf of the Prefontaine Memorial Committee, I am pleased to award the Prefontaine Athletic Award to Brooke Davison.