Four Boulder’s sports icons — climber Jeff Lowe, triathlete Colleen Cannon, Bolder Boulder founder Steve Bosley and five-time distance running world record holder Arturo Barrios — will be inducted into the Boulder Sports Hall of Fame May 20 at Galvanize, in the former Daily Camera building in downtown Boulder.
The Hall of Fame was established in 2011 by a group of local athletes to honor and preserve the legacy of some of the all-time greats who lived and trained in Boulder on their way to becoming the best in the world in their respective events. The Boulder Sports Hall of Fame also honors one “Cornerstone Contributor” each year for accomplishments in helping make Boulder one of the world’s leading centers of sports. This year, that is Bosley, who left the University of Colorado Board of Regents last year, because of term limitations.
Bosley, 75, was instrumental in bringing running and road racing into its professional era. In 1979, he teamed up with friend Frank Shorter, the 1972 Olympic marathon gold medalist, to create the Bolder Boulder 10K, which has grown into one of the top races in the world. Bosley is known as an innovator. Named president of the State Bank of Greeley at age 30, and then president of the Bank of Boulder when he was 32, Bosley used his financial skills to help usher track and field into its professional era. As treasurer of The Athletics Congress (TAC), Bosley helped establish the “TAC Trust,” allowing athletes to openly accept prize and appearance money. Until that time, runners had to take money “under the table” and ran the risk of being discovered and banned.
This will be a special occasion for Lowe, one of the most influential climbers ever. Since 1999, he has lived with the effects of an unknown disease similar to ALS. In 2012, Lowe’s health took a turn for the worse, which landed him on hospice support. He has outlived all predictions, recovering enough to be able to leave hospice. Lowe has more than 1000 first ascents to his credit, many of which have never been repeated. An early pioneer of alpine-style ascents, Lowe was known for doing the most inspired climbs with the least equipment. His most recent honor was the Piolet D’Or Lifetime Achievement Award, the highest honor in the world for alpinism.
Cannon, 56, first came to Boulder in the summer of 1983 to train with established professional Diane Israel, helping make Boulder a center of the burgeoning triathlon world. Cannon, one of the pioneers of female triathlon, has lived in Boulder since 1986. She used her background as a collegiate swimmer and runner at Auburn University to stay near the top of the triathlon world from 1982-1992. Her career was highlighted by winning the 1984 World Triathlon Championship, as well as becoming a two-time U.S. national champ and competing for the U.S. national team. After retiring, Cannon founded Women’s Quest adventure retreats. She lives in the mountains west of Boulder.
Longmont resident Barrios, 54, is regarded as one of the greatest long-distance runners in history. He came to Boulder in 1986 at the invitation of Bolder Boulder elite athlete coordinator Rich Castro and never left. A native of Mexico and engineering graduate of Texas A&M University, Barrios burst onto the world scene in the spring of 1986, setting the world record for a road 10K in his first U.S. race as a professional. He went on to set other world records, including the 10,000 meters and hour run, on the track. Barrios is the first person in history to run sub-one hour for a half marathon (13.1 miles).