Willie Banks

Track & Field

Served as envoy

  • 2023  –  Virtual

Willie Banks is President of HSJ, Incorporated, a sports management and consulting firm that specializes in marketing and networking between the US and Japan. HSJ, Inc. provides its clients with value-added skills and experience for events and sports organizations. With vast, sports experience, industry knowledge and operational skills for sports businesses, HSJ, Inc. and its network help businesses and individuals implement new programs, develop strategic planning, and create fresh marketing tools.

For many years Willie has assisted cities bidding for international events like the Olympic Games. He has served as the Deputy Executive Director for the 1994 World Cup of soccer and the Director of Athlete Services for the 1996 Atlanta Olympic Village. He is famous throughout the world and has represented his country in many ways. Taking note of Willie’s international popularity and outstanding personal character and leadership qualities, Time Magazine once dubbed him “The United States’ ambassador of track and field”.

Though Willie is a former world record holder and Olympian, much of his fame comes from his innovative approach to sports. Willie entertained the crowd and in response the spectators rhythmically clapped while he ran down the runway for his jump. It became so popular that it set a tradition that is mimicked throughout the world to this day. In fact, in Finland they call it “the Banks”!

Willie continues to participate in athletics and has set several age group world and national records in the triple jump and the high jump. He is an avid Zumba dance fitness enthusiast and loves to work with kids through his World Record Camps program.

Willie is a leader. He currently sits on the World Athletics Council, the international federation for Athletics (Track and Field). He is a past President of the US Olympians. He sits on the Board of Director of the USATF, and the USATF Foundation. He is the former Vice President of The Athletics Congress (TAC) 1986-89, 1988 Olympic Team Captain, former USATF Alumni President and past chairman of the Athletes Advisory Committee. While working on the 1996 Atlanta Olympic Games the Martin Luther King, Jr. Women’s Association awarded Willie with their “Drum Major for Justice” award given to that individual who exemplifies a positive leadership image.