The Dominican Olympic Committee is extremely proud of this publication, which narrates the 70-year history of the olympic movement in our country. The protagonists have provided us with countless challenges, misfortunes and glories over time and is to them that we pay tribute, and express our sincere gratitude from the bottom of our hearts.
With this publication, the Dominican Olympic Committee (COD) and its collaborators wish not only to promote the efforts made by athletes, trainers and officials who have dedicated all their time and effort to elevate the name of the country in faraway lands, but also wish to celebrate the 70TH anniversary of our institution.
The Dominican Olympic Committee was created to insert the country into the elite world sports, and since its origin until present days it has continued moving forward, facing enormous challenges, so that today it can proudly show the achievements obtained through the sacrifices of thousands of men and women.
Dominican sports began causing impact in the Caribbean shores during the 1940s, during the Central American and Caribbean Games in Barranquilla. Ten years later, Dominican sports would impact at a continental level in the Pan American Games in Chicago, and by 1964 in the Olympic arena, making its debut in the Tokyo Olympic Games.
The first Olympic medal was won 20 years after the debut, and it took another 20 years to win the first Olympic gold medal. But in the last six editions –Athens 2004, Beijing 2008, Singapore 2010 (Youth Olympics), London 2012, Nanking 2014 (Youth Olympics) and Rio 2016–, the Dominican Republic climbed the prize podium by conquering 12 medals, a triumph envied by more developed nations with larger economies.
This book captures the great challenges assumed by the COD throughout seven decades; from organizing three multi-sport competitions, to creating a factory of top level athletes, and promoting the growth of the concept of sport, which raises patriotic enthusiasm like very few other activities in the world can.
This work also addresses the great challenges that the country faces to maintain the Olympic torch lit.
LUIS MEJÍA OVIEDO
President of the Dominican Olympic Committee COD