RICHARD K. OUELLETTE '78
Cross Country, Track & Field
One of the premier distance runners in the history of the College, RICK OUELLETTE was not only an outstanding student-athlete, but a team leader and innovator in both track and cross country. He was a standout two-sport athlete at Killingly, CT High School before matriculating at the College.
At the College, Ouellette made his mark in both sports for Coach Gary Jusseaume G'80. He became the first and only male track athlete in the history of the program to compete in the N.C.A.A. Division II national championship at North Dakota State University in Fargo, ND in 1978. He captained both sports, cross country (1977) for his senior season and track (1977, 1978) in both his junior and senior seasons. He also helped to found as a "club" team and captained the first indoor track team in the history of the College in the winter of 1977-78.
The N.C.A.A. experience earned him all-America recognition as the ninth-place finisher in the 1,500-meter event won by world-class distance runner Steve Scott of the University of California Irvine. Ouellette's time of 3:48.6 was just six seconds off the winning pace in one of the tightest and most competitive fields ever. Scott, of course, has gone on to become one of the world's premier runners competing in several Olympic games.
Ouellette's 1,500-meter time of 3:48.6 at the nationals and his 4:10.9 time in the mile at Bryant (1978) are still the best in Greyhound team history.
He capped his brilliant career by being named the winner of the Rev. Armand Desautels, A.A. Memorial Award as the premier male senior student-athlete---he carried a 3.7 grade-point average. He was graduated in May 1978 with a bachelor of arts in both natural sciences and politcs with a concentration in pre-medical studies. He subsequently was graduated from the University of Connecticut School of Optometry and has a practice in his hometown of Danielson, CT.