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Olympic Purple and Gold

1977 Duke carries the 2010 Olympic torch

JMU alum Jim Pivarnik ('77M) of East Lansing, Mich., carried the Olympic torch for 400 meters

Jim Pivarnik ('77M) of East Lansing, Mich., carried the Olympic torch for 400 meters.

Jim Pivarnik ('77M) of East Lansing, Mich., carried the Olympic torch for 400 meters in Strathmore, Alberta, Canada, on Jan. 19. Pivarnik is a professor of kinesiology and epidemiology at Michigan State University and president of the American College of Sports Medicine. He earned his master's in physical education from JMU in 1977.

Coca-Cola Enterprises Inc. chose Pivarnik as one of 20 individuals to sponsor as torch bearers in the 2010 Winter Olympics torch relay. Coca-Cola's torch bearers were chosen because of the positive impact they have made in their communities.

"I was chosen by Coca-Cola because they are one of the corporate sponsors of the American College of Sports Medicine," says Pivarnik. "I carried the torch in the small town of Strathmore. It is just east of Calgary. It's a very charming community, and I am convinced that everyone in the town came out to cheer us on — even all the schoolchildren who were let out of school to watch the torch relay. … I was lucky to carry the torch an extra 100 meters. The standard torch run is 300 meters, but we had an extra 100 meters to fill on this part of the relay."

Watch a YouTube video of this Duke carrying the 2010 Olympic torch on its way to Vancouver at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tlnshs9rWF4.

Look for an alumni profile about Jim Pivarnik in the Spring/Summer issue of Madison magazine, which mails in April. And, read more about Pivarnik's torch-bearing experience in the American College of Sports Medicine's e-newsletter Sports Medicine Bulletin at http://www.multibriefs.com/briefs/acsm/torchbearer.htm.