Harry Butch Reynolds began competing in track and field at 12 years of age. Within four years of lacing up his first set of track shoes he was setting records, many of which are still standing today. Although Butch says that his first love was football, he appeared to be more of a natural track and field athlete.
Butch is best known for his Olympic track and field performances. However, his most impressive moment came in 1988 in Zurich Switzerland when he became the fastest man in the world in the 400 meter race. He set a world record with a winning time of 43.29 seconds, a record that stood for 11 years. Another highlight in Butch’s career was participating in the Winter Olympic Torch Run, which came through his hometown of Akron, Ohio. Butch stated that “It was an honor for me to participate in this event” which took place in 2002 especially since this would be his last Olympic Run through the streets of Akron, Ohio.
Butch is a native of Akron, Ohio and the son of Harry and Catherine Reynolds. He is married to his wife Stephanie and they have two children. He is a graduate of Archbishop Hoban High School and the Ohio State University (OSU). Butch earned his Bachelors Degree in education in 1991 and also served as an assistant track coach at OSU from 1996 – 1998. He also served as an Assistant Football Coach from 2005 – 2008 as the first Division 1 Football Speed Coach.
In 1995 Butch established the Butch Reynolds “Care For Kids Foundation (BRCFK)”. He created his foundation as a means of giving back to his community and to work with youth in general. The BRCFK works with over 500 kids annually and employs over ten contractors a year. Butch frequently reminds others that although he had a lot of support when he was growing up and competing, that cannot be said for most of our youth. “I know that I cannot be everything to everybody, but I am going to do what I can with what I have and the talent’s I’ve been blessed with”. Butch also believes that it takes a village to raise one child. And his motto is “Always do your best”.
Currently Butch keeps himself busy working with his foundation, hosting and running camps and clinics, making event appearances, conducting motivational speaking for schools, colleges and corporations and serving as a part owner of an Athletic Training Facility called D1 Sports in Columbus, Ohio.
Below are some of his accomplishments:
World Record Holder
- Set the world record at the time of 43.29 seconds in the 400 meter race in Zurich Switzerland in 1988. He also set a world record in the 4 X 400 Relay at 2.54 seconds.
- United States Olympian in 1988, 1992 and 1996. Received 1 Gold Medal and 1 Silver Medal.
- Participated in the following World Championship Games:
1987 (Rome), 1993 (Germany and Toronto), 1995 (Sweden), 1997 (Athens, Greece). Received 5 Gold Medals, 2 Silver Medals and 1 Bronze Medal in those competitions.
- Recognized as an NCAA All-American Champion in 1987.
- Recognized as a Jesse Owens Award Finalist in 1988.
- Inducted in to the Ohio State Hall Of Fame in 1995.
- Inducted in to 6 other Halls of Fame.
- Participated in 5 Olympic Trials (Los Angeles, CA, Indianapolis, IN, New Orleans, LA, Atlanta, GA and Eugene OR).