Awards & Charitable Presentations at Bill Rodgers Jingle Bell Run
Posted On June 9, 2020
recognizes two local contributors to Boston running community at Bill
Rodgers Jingle Bell Run and makes contribution to scholarship fund and
Boston Centers for Youth & Families
BOSTON — The Bill Rodgers Jingle Bell Run, presented
by the Boston Athletic Association on Sunday evening (December 12) at
the Hyatt Regency Downtown Crossing, drew hundreds of runners for a 2.3
mile fun run through the Boston Common and the financial district before
returning to the Downtown Crossing area for a holiday post-race party.
As is the tradition at the Bill Rodgers Jingle Bell Run, holiday dress
and costumes were in full-form among the field. The B.A.A. — along
with brothers Bill and Charlie Rodgers — presented the Will Cloney
Award to Richard Johnson and the Jock Semple Award to Bill Riley. As
part of the event and in the holiday spirit, the B.A.A. also made
contributions to the Rodgers brother’s high school scholarship fund and
City of Boston’s Centers for Youth & Families (BCYF).
About the Semple and Cloney Awards
Cloney and Jock Semple were longtime caretakers of the B.A.A.Ûªs
athletic and administrative efforts. In their honor, the B.A.A. and
brothers Bill and Charlie Rodgers bestow awards upon worthy local
recipients. The Cloney Award is presented to an individual who has
promoted the running industry, especially locally. The Semple Award is
presented annually to a local athlete who has made an impact within
running, especially through performance.
Will Cloney Award – Richard A. Johnson
A. Johnson has served as Curator of The Sports Museum since 1982. He
has also authored or co-authored books on running including: The Boston Marathon, A Century of Boston Sports, and Young at Heart, The Story of Johnny Kelley.
Johnson also created and serves as editor of the Sportstown Series,
first published by Northeastern University Press and now by the
University Press of New England. This series is comprised of original
and reprinted titles related to Boston and New England sports.
Johnson graduated from Lawrence Academy in 1974 where he was an All
New England Prep cross country runner for two years. During his years at
Bates College (’78) Johnson worked in Kildare, Ireland for the Irish
Georgian Society and later for the Print Department of the Boston Public
Library where he served as an intern. Following college, Johnson
completed the Publishing Institute at the University of Denver and later
worked for both the Worcester Evening Gazette and Houghton Mifflin
Publishers before joining The Sports Museum as its first employee.
With The Sports Museum, Johnson has mounted exhibits on topics as
diverse as: “Women in Sports, Insights from Her Past;” ÛÏRocky Marciano, A
Life in Pictures;Û and ÛÏSylianos Kyriakides, The Human Race,Û among
Jock Semple Award ÛÒ Bill Riley
Bill Riley, known as ÛÏCape Cod’s Ironman,Û has consistently won his
age division in races around New England for decades. The 74-year-old
harrier from Centerville is a five-time Outstanding Athlete of the Year
winner as recognized by USATF, and has been ranked number one in the
country in his age group six times since 1997.
A six-time winner of the National Triathlon Championships and a
four-time winner of the National Duathlon Championships, Riley is a
frequent face at New England races like the Falmouth Road Race, Beach to
Beacon, and Mount Washington Road Race.
Riley has completed more than 40 marathons around the country with a
PR of 2:44, including 21 Boston Marathons, with a best on the historic
course of 2:50 in 1997. Not bad for someone who began his running career
at age 40.
Earlier this year, he won the USATF Half Marathon US Championships
70-74 division with a time of 1 hour, 33 minutes. And in June, Riley won
his age division in the USATF National Mountain Running Championships
at the Mount Washington Road Race. These accomplishments helped Riley
become the USATF Long Distance Running Athlete of the Year for 2010 in
his age group of 70-74.
Riley is currently a member of the Boston Athletic Association Running Club and the Cape Cod Athletic Club.
Newington (Conn.) High School Cross Country Boosters Scholarship
Bill Rodgers Foundation — now in partnership with the Boston Athletic
Association for the Bill Rodgers Jingle Bell Run — sponsors two $500
scholarship awards in honor of Coach Frank D. O’Rourke. Rodgers, a
member of the NHS Class of 1966 and perhaps the most famous distance
runner of all time, has established these awards to recognize two
student athletes who best exemplify the outstanding qualities of
character and athletic achievement encouraged and fostered by his
mentor, Coach O’Rourke.
Boston Center for Youth and Families
Centers for Youth & Families (BCYF) is the City of BostonÛªs largest
youth and human service agency offering programs and activities for
people of all ages at 38 facilities in Boston. Each month, BCYF offers
more than 400 programs ranging from education and enrichment to a wide
range of sports programs and leagues. BCYF is committed to providing
high-quality, outcome-driven programs that are responsive to
needs. To reach this goal, it has developed a comprehensive program
framework known as ACES:Arts, Community & Civic engagement,
Education, and Sports. For more details, visit them at www.cityofboston.gov/bcyf/