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U.S. Olympic Committee hires diversity director

April 27, 2012, 3 p.m. (ET)

Newly created position to lead implementation of important initiative

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. - The United States Olympic Committee today announced the hiring of Jason Thompson as its first director of diversity and inclusion. Thompson will be tasked with creating and managing the USOC's diversity and inclusion initiatives and consulting within the Olympic and Paralympic family. He will report to Kirsten Volpi, USOC Chief Administrative Officer, and will be based in Colorado Springs, Colo.

The appointment of a diversity director is one of the key recommendations from the report issued last fall by the USOC's Diversity Working Group, a volunteer group of individuals that was assembled by the USOC to help create a more inclusive, competitive and progressive organization and management approach. Among his core responsibilities, Thompson will be charged with implementing the remaining recommendations of the DWG report, which is available at TeamUSA.org.

"Diversity and inclusion are core values at the USOC because they make us better as an organization, ensuring that we're capable of solving our complex business needs and equipped to provide the kind of support America's elite athletes need," said USOC CEO Scott Blackmun. "The more we include diverse perspectives and experiences in our work and thinking, the more likely we'll be able to thrive in an incredibly competitive world. I'm excited to have Jason join our team and certain he'll help our entire Olympic and Paralympic family succeed."

A 25-year veteran in the area of diversity and inclusion programs, Thompson was most recently vice president of diversity and community health improvement at INTEGRIS. Prior, he served as director for the Office of Diversity at the University of Colorado at Denver and Health Sciences Center.

"The USOC is an incredibly inspiring organization and I'm absolutely thrilled to be joining the team," said Thompson. "To have the opportunity to help the Olympic and Paralympic family in the United States become even more successful is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity and I can't wait to get started."

Thompson holds a master's and bachelor's degree in sociology from the University of Wyoming and is a graduate of Harvard's John F. Kennedy School executive training program. Married and the father of two children, Thompson will be based at the USOC's headquarters in Colorado Springs.