Ralph Boston

1970 - 1979 Inductees
Year Honored:
Tennessee State University


Although it’s true that human beings can’t fly, Ralph Boston sure came close. In 1960 the Tennessee State University graduate soared to a world record in the long jump. His track & field coach at TSU, the legendary Edward S. Temple, once said: “You have to keep on pushing. This is what athletics instills in people.” Boston’s ability to “keep on pushing” kept him among the top long jumpers in the world for an astounding three consecutive Olympics. He won gold in 1960, silver in 1964, and bronze in 1968. Boston’s awards and honors are many. He was selected as a World Athlete of the Year and as the North American Athlete of the Year. He is a member of many halls of fame besides our own, including the U.S. Track and Field Hall of Fame and the Olympic Hall of Fame. Boston’s record beyond the athletic arena is also exemplary. Professionally, he served as a consultant to the U.S. Olympic team, as a sportscaster for ESPN, and as director of customer relations for Ericsson, Inc. He is currently owner of ServiceMaster, a carpet cleaning business. He has also worked tirelessly in the community. Through the Atlanta Hawks organization, Boston has worked with at-risk kids and has participated in National Reading Month. In 1985 he received the NCAA Silver Anniversary Award for college athletes who have gone on to become successful in other areas. An inspiration to a whole new generation, Ralph Boston continues to teach that each of us can soar beyond our wildest dreams.

Credit 1:
Boston, R.
Credit 2:
United States Olympic Committee

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