Jim Browne played an extremely valuable role in the development of athletics within Newfoundland and Labrador. His outstanding contributions involved vital leadership during a period of time when track and field was the objective of rather powerful individuals who tried to have it vacate its only suitable facility within St. John’s. He also provided a great deal of day-to-day duty in a variety of officiating duties and all was highlighted by the excellence of his leadership as provincial track and field president. His excellent reputation as a fair and unbiased individual, coupled with his exceptional ability to co-operate with anybody in any situation, was extremely valuable to track and field in a lengthy controversy over use of the King George Fifth facility. Soccer made a determined effort to gain complete control of the field but thanks in great measure to Jim Browne track and field was able to use the facility until another facility was provided.
In fact, it was his leadership that played the major role in a legitimate track being installed at King George Fifth. It surrounded the soccer pitch and allowed track and field meets to be held there.
He was elected provincial track and field president in 1962 and retained the top position until 1975. In 1968 the national organization elected him first vice-president and he served nationally in the same productive manner as he did provincially. It was during this period that he spearheaded successful efforts to have local athletes attend a variety of national meets and training camps.
It should be noted that prior to and during his presidency, he was extremely prominent in the day-to-day operation of provincial track and field. He attended every event, be they road races or track meets, filling a wide range of positions from starter to judge and contributed greatly to the successes that the sport attained.
He provided great support for track and field by gathering exceptional backing for a wide range of events and competition through his sports reporting, as a writer with the Evening Telegram and as an announcer with VOCM. His overall sports reporting and its importance was recognized in 2003 when he was added to the "Media Wall Of Fame" in the Bob Cole Press Box at Mile One Stadium in St. John’s.
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