William Steinkraus Nominated for US Olympic Hall of Fame

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William-Steinkraus on his Olympic individual gold medal mount, Snowbound

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colorado, Feb. 27–William Steinkraus, a five-time Olympic jumper rider and the first American to win an individual equestrian gold medal, has been nominated for induction into the U.S. Olympic Hall of Fame at the age of 99.

Bill Steinkraus is the sole equestrian among 18 individual Olympic athletes, five Paralympic athletes and five teams announced on Monday by the U.S. Olympic Committee and Allstate Insurance Company as nominees eligible for induction into the Olympic Hall of Fame.

Fans can vote for the athletes and teams for the Class of 2012 by going to http://www.teamusa.org/resources/u-s-olympic-hall-of-fame.

Voters will be allowed to vote once per day, per category, through April 9. Once voting closes, the public vote totals will be added to the vote totals of Olympians, Paralympians and U.S. Olympic Family members to determine the six Olympians, one Paralympian and one team that will make up the 2012 class. The U.S. Olympic Hall of Fame Class of 2012 will be announced in May and inducted at a ceremony in Chicago on July 12.

Bill rode for the USET for 22 years and captained the team for 17 years. He rode in five Olympics and his most notable win was the individual gold medal aboard Snowbound at the 1968 Mexico City Games, the first American ever to win an individual equestrian gold medal.

He also shared two Olympic team silver medals–at Rome in 1960 and Munich in 1972–and team bronze at Helsinki in 1952. He was a member of the Pan American gold medal teams in 1959 at Chicago and in 1963 at São Paulo, Brazil.

The nominee list consists of the following 18 individual Olympic athletes, five Paralympic athletes and five teams.

The complete list of nominees:

Individual Olympians
Greg Barton, canoe/kayak
Valerie Brisco, track & field
Gail Devers, track & field
Anne Donovan, basketball
Lisa Fernandez, softball
Gretchen Fraser, alpine skiing
Cammi Granato, ice hockey
Gary Hall, Jr., swimming
Bill Koch, cross country skiing
Kristine Lilly, soccer
Dan O’Brien, track & field
Darrell Pace, archery
Tracie Ruiz-Conforto, synchronized swimming
Terry Schroeder, water polo
John Smith, wrestling
Dawn Staley, basketball
William Steinkraus, equestrian
Jenny Thompson, swimming

Jean Driscoll, track & field
Sharon Hedrick, track & field
David Larson, track & field
Jim Mastro, goalball, judo, track & field, wrestling
Tony Volpentest, track & field

1976 women’s swimming 4x100m freestyle relay
1988 men’s volleyball
1996 women’s basketball
1998 women’s ice hockey
2004 women’s softball

The nominees were selected by a nominating committee comprised of individuals representing the United States Olympians Association, Athletes’ Advisory Council, media members, USOC executive team, USOC Board of Directors, one at-large committee member and a Paralympic sports representative.