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  • Anthony Ray

Gerald Hector talks with World Track and Field Champion, David Oliver on #ItsEasySon

Updated: Dec 9, 2022

On September 6, 2017, Director of Athletics Kery Davis named World Olympian and alum David Oliver as its Director for Track & Field Program at Howard University. Although the 2020 outdoor season was canceled due to the coronavirus (COVID-19), the program had success during the cross country and indoor seasons. Distance runners Melanie White and Gavin Williams earned All-MEAC honors at the 2019 Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference (MEAC) Cross Country Championships. The season also saw 11 Bison named to the MEAC Cross Country All-Academic Team. During the 2019-20 indoor season, Kameron Davis (60-meter hurdles) received All-MEAC honors after placing third at the 2020 MEAC Indoor Track & Field Championships. On the women's side, the 4x400 relay squad of Oluchi Ike, Jessika Gbai, Ozioma Scott and Dasia Wilson claimed second overall while earning All-MEAC honors. The program also saw 24 Bison named to the MEAC Indoor & Outdoor Track & Field All-Academic Team. Howard doubled its participation in the 2019 NCAA Outdoor East Preliminary Round from two to four Bison: Sydney Benson (4x400 relay); Jessika Gbai (200-meter dash; 4x400 relay); Oluchi Ike (400-meter hurdles; 4x400 relay); and Ozioma Scott (400-meter dash; 4x400 relay). In his second year at the helm, Director Oliver witnessed several school records broken and multiple student-athletes receiving All-MEAC honors. Academically, both squads received 2018-19 U.S. Track & Field Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) Academic honors. In his first season (2017-18), Director Oliver saw Dominique Cleggett (long jump) and Uchechi Onuoha (400-meter hurdles) reach the 2018 NCAA Outdoor East Preliminary Round while watching nearly two dozen receive All-Academic honors. During the cross-country season, Mohammed Bah and Destiny Stanford earned All-MEAC recognition. The Denver, Colo., native was destined to be a track & field star after his mother, Brenda Chambers, secured a spot on the 1980 Olympic Team in the 400-meter hurdles. Oliver returns to his alma mater as a highly decorated professional athlete. He was the 2008 Olympic Bronze Medalist in the 110-meter hurdles, and the 2013 World Champion in the same event. On the indoor track and field stage, he earned the Gold medal in the 2008 USA Indoor Championships in the 60-meter hurdles and bronze in the 2010 World Championships. He maintained top 10 rankings in the world for 11 consecutive seasons and has received several accolades including the 2010 Jesse Owens Award which recognizes the USA's Most Outstanding Track Athlete. A two-time All-American as student-athlete at Howard University, Oliver was inducted into the 2014 Howard University Athletics Hall of Fame and the 2016 Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference Hall of Fame. Off the track, Oliver dedicates his time to helping with youth track competitions and mentorship through the David Oliver Indoor Classic in Winston Salem, N.C., and the David Oliver Classic in Washington, D.C., while assisting sponsored athletes in the Quicksilver Track Club in Atlanta, Ga. Oliver has been featured in several major magazines, including Essence Magazine, Sports Illustrated for Kids, Sobe Fit Magazine, Stack Magazine, Spikes Magazine, and ESPN the Magazine. In Sept. 2008, he was honored at Howard's 141st Opening Convocation for his outstanding achievements in athletics. Oliver was also honored by the Mayor of Denver with the naming of October 3rd as "David Oliver Day" and receiving a key to the city. He has also received the key to the city of Greensboro, N.C. Oliver obtained his bachelor's degree from Howard University in business administration in 2004. He is married to Emily Oliver and they have one son, Dawson. (credit:

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