UMA Employee Wellness Program
Events & Happenings
Calendar & Resources
Wellness Tips & Resources
Employee Assistance Program
Capital Area Economic Development Union
CAP-EDU March 9th Meeting Notes
University Advancement
Alumni Newsletter
Alumni Upcoming Meetings & Events
Alumni Association Board
Join the Alumni Association
Alumni Contact Info Update Form
Advancement Project Proposal
Senior College
Senior College Exchange Programs
Senior College Fees
Senior College Network
Senior College Financial Assistance
Senior College Possible Future Courses
Senior College Information
Senior College Instructors
Senior College Vision
Forum on the Future
Forum on the Cooperative Economy
Forum on the Future: Capitalizing on the Creative Economy - April 2
The Future of Health Care in the US - Sept. 23
Forum on the Future: Questions about Health Care?…Best Available Answers
Forum on the Future: Agriculture in Maine
Forum on the Future with Paul Kando - March 4th
Forum: Better Health Care At Lower Cost -Oct. 21
Forum on Education Reform September 15
Six Feet Under: Funeral Choices
Senior College Board of Directors
Senior College By-Laws
Senior College Course Offerings
Senior College Events
Research and Pedagogy Series
Community Partnerships
Partners in the Parks
Storm Water Protection in Maine
Women, Work and Community
UMA Board of Visitors
Employment Opportunities
Holocaust and Human Rights Center of Maine
EPSCOR Turkey Research Project
Project Home
Peter Milligan
Turkey Project Gallery
Chris Lage
Joseph Szakas
French At UMA
AATF Maine Conference
Calendar of Events
French at UMA News
French Club
French Conversation Table
Cultural Events
French Minor
Frequently Asked Questions
Fun in French for Kids
French Language Materials - Lithgow Library
Fun in French for Kids - Registration Form
Related Links
Study/Teach Abroad
Subscribe to French @ UMA
French@UMA Unsubscriber
Maine French Heritage Language Program
MFHLP Curriculum
French Courses
Women, Work and Community
The Campus Green
Climate Action Plan
PCES Members
UMA's Greenhouse Gas Inventory
President's Council for Environmental Sustainability
Reduce Fossil Fuel Consumption
Maine Women's Hall of Fame
Honorees - Chronological List
Sharon H. Abrams
Mary R. Cathcart
Patricia M. Collins
Sharon Barker
U.S. Senator Susan Collins
Lyn Mikel Brown
Elizabeth Crandall
Linda Smith Dyer
Laura Fortman
Mary Farrar
Ethel Wilson Gammon
Caroline Gentile
Dorothy Murphy Healy
Karen Heck
Nancy H. Hensel
Judith Magyar Isaacson
Theodora June Kalikow
Chilton R. Knudsen
Laurie Gagnon Lachance
Gail H. Laughlin
Dale McCormick
Ruth L. Lockhart
Elizabeth Mitchell
Gilda E. Nardone
Chellie Pingree
Judy Ayotte Paradis
Katherine Ogilvie Musgrave
Lois Galgay Reckitt
Ninetta May Runnals
Elizabeth S. Russell
Patricia E. Ryan
Joan Benoit Samuelson
Mildred Brown Schrumpf
Margaret Chase Smith
Senator Olympia J. Snowe
Marti Stevens
Thelma Swain
Eloise A. Vitelli
Mabel Sine Wadsworth
Florence Brooks Whitehouse
Esther Elizabeth Wood
BPW Hall of Fame
Patricia Carol Patti Bourgoin
Jeanne Littlefield Hammond
Arline Rebecca Andrews Lovejoy

Joan Benoit Samuelson

Joan Benoit Samuelson

Joan Benoit Samuelson is a hero and role model for women everywhere, but particularly here in Maine. As Maine's first female athlete to achieve world renown, she has paved the way for other young Maine women to pursue their dreams, push themselves further, to not give up. Joan Benoit Samuelson has generously shared her experience and advice through her books, Running Tide and Running for Women, and by giving running clinics, coaching women's cross-country and long-distance running, working as a sports commentator and a motivational speaker.

The eyes of the world were watching Joan Benoit when she won the first ever women's Olympic Marathon on August 5, 1984. Born in Maine in 1957, she was the only female student in her high school to run cross-country. In her junior year, as a way of reconditioning herself after she broke her leg in a skiing accident, she began to run more often and to run greater distances.

While a senior at Bowdoin College, Benoit entered the 1979 Boston Marathon as a virtual unknown and won, setting a record for American women. Following surgery on her Achilles tendons, she again won the Boston Marathon in 1983. In May 1984, she won the U.S. Olympic Trials marathon, only 17 days after arthroscopic knee surgery. Norway's Grete Waitz was favored to win the gold medal in 1984, but Benoit surged ahead only three miles into the race and completed the race one and a half minutes in the lead. Twelve years and two children later, Joan qualified for the 1996 Olympic Trials Marathon. She has a long list of victories, has set many records, and is still competing.

Joan has worked tirelessly in Maine on behalf of the Samantha Smith Foundation, Big Brothers/Big Sisters, Special Olympics, Multiple Sclerosis, the Maine Women's Fund, and the Governor's Executive Council on Communities for Children. In 1998 she put Maine on the road race map by establishing a world-class road race in Cape Elizabeth to benefit children's charities in Maine.

Studies show that participation in sports by young women significantly improves self-esteem and enhances the chances of success in all areas of life. When Joan began adolescence, only 1 in 27 girls in Maine participated in competitive high school sports. Today that ratio is 1 in 3. Part of this increase is due to the culture change brought about by having female sports heroes and role models like Joan Benoit Samuelson.

Joan Benoit Samuelson's persistence and endurance will long inspire increased self-confidence in Maine women, reinforcing the knowledge that Maine women are tough-they can compete, go the distance, and achieve great things.

As Joan continues to pursue her goals we celebrate her enthusiasm and spirit, and the spirit and potential of all Maine women, by recognition of Joan Benoit Samuelson's place in the Maine Womens Hall of Fame.

Inducted March 2000