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10.11.2008 Sports News

Former continental champ vies for top GAA job

By The Statesman

On November 12th 2008, Ghana Athletics will host its first ever congress to elect members of its executive council as mandated by its constitution and that of the International Association of Athletics Federations.

Congress is the general assembly of the constituents and the highest authority of the Ghana Athletics Association (GAA). The positions up for election include that of the Chair.

 One of the candidates for the position of Chairman is Professor Francis Dodoo.

He was born and grew up in Accra, Ghana, where at a very early age his father, a two-sport national team star, introduced him to sports.

Before he turned 15, Dodoo had already been invited to the national cricket team.

By the time he left the shores of Ghana at age 20, he had earned call-ups to represent Ghana in five additional sports: volleyball, hockey, basketball, team handball, and track and field.

 A late arrival to track and field, he competed in the triple-jump at Achimota Secondary School and the University of Ghana.

In December 1980, he accepted an athletic scholarship to attend Washington State University in the US. In 1982, Dodoo became the national triple jump record holder.

In August 1987, he went on to break the African Games Record, which remains the oldest standing continental record today; 21 years and counting.

Presently, Dr. Francis Dodoo is a Full Professor of Sociology and Demography and is the current director of the United Nations Regional Institute for Population Studies (RIPS) at the University of Ghana.