New York mourns the passing of sport visionary Dr. Norbert Sander, Jr.

3/17/2017
 
Dr. Norbert Sander, Jr., founder of The Armory Foundation and influencer of the National Track & Field Hall of Fame’s placement at The Armory, died Friday at age 74.
 
The 2000 recipient of the Heliodoro and Patricia Rico Lifetime Achievement Award and a 2005 USATF President’s Award winner, Dr. Sander was an advocate for bettering the opportunities for young people to get involved in track & field. Dr. Sander was the president, CEO and founder of the 168th Street Armory Foundation, which revitalized The Armory to accommodate over 100 events annually, serving over 125,000 athletes and 500,000 visitors every year.
 
"We are saddened by the loss of Dr. Sander.  From his days as an elite athlete in the late 60s and early 70s to his passing he was a consummate advocate for our sport; both in the city and nationally," USATF New York president Lauren Primerano said.  "His vision of revitalizing the New Balance Track & Field Center at The Armory in the early 90s came at time that was so critical to the sport’s future reassurance at all levels from youth to masters.  The facility became the new benchmark and helped elevate the visibility of the indoor track & field season across the country.  Athletes flocked to the city to run at the Armory.  On behalf of USATF New York we offer our deepest condolences to the his family, friends, and colleagues.”
 
For nearly 25 years, Dr. Sander led The Armory toward becoming the foremost indoor track & field facility in the country, with the venue now home to over 57 high school and a dozen American records. Dr. Sander’s efforts made possible stories like Alan Webb’s sub-4:00 mile in 2001, the first ever by a high schooler, which was bested by Drew Hunter in 2016. In 2014, Dr. Sander was the recipient of the NYRR Abebe Bikila Award for Outstanding Contribution to the Sport of Running.
 
Dr. Sander was also an active competitor, winning championship medals at the Penn Relays (1963), the NYC Marathon (champion in 1974), and many masters events. By profession, Dr. Sander was a physician and practiced medicine for over 45 years. A lifelong resident of New York City, Dr. Sander resided in Hastings-on-Hudson with his family until his passing.