Chakouian to be Inducted into Massachusetts Hall of Fame
Jan. 31, 2007
NORMAL, Ill. - Illinois State track and field assistant coach Jeff Chakouian has earned numerous accolades for his exceptional performance as a world class thrower, and will add another plaudit to his résumé when he is inducted into the Massachusetts State Track Coaches Association (MSTCA) Athlete Hall of Fame this weekend.
Chakouian, a native of Seekonk, Mass., will be inducted along with seven other honorees during a ceremony held in conjunction with the MSTCA Elite Track and Field Meet on Sunday February 4, at 11 a.m. at the Reggie Lewis Track and Athletics Center in Boston, Mass. Chakouian, who was a first ballot selection, will be recognized for his impressive list of national and international competitive experience.
He was six-time all-American in the shot put, while competing collegiately at Kentucky, and was honored after learning of his induction.
"This honor really means a lot to me, and anytime you are recognized it feels good," said Chakouian. "This experience will be humbling, when I think of where I come from and the athletes I will be associated with. It's pretty special that people back home think highly of me, even though I'm not around the area anymore."
Chakouian received his bachelors degree in education kinesiology and health promotions from Kentucky in May 2005, where he was a five-time Southeastern Conference (SEC) champion, an eight-time all-SEC selection in the shot put and was a team captain for three seasons.
A product of Seekonk High School, Chakouian was a junior national champion in both the shot put and discus in 2001, as well as being elected team captain of the USA vs. Great Britain Junior World Tour. In 2006, Chakouian placed 5th at the USATF Outdoor Championships, as his throw was the 17th farthest throw in the world for the year.
Chakouian has competed in numerous international competitions, finishing in 5th place at the Jr. World Championships (Santiago, Chile) in 2000, placing 1st at the Jr. Pan Am Games (Sante Fe, Argentina) in 2001, while being ranked no. 6 all-time on the Jr. World Shot Put List.
Illinois head track and field coach Elvis Forde feels that Chakouian is deserving of the award, and can already see a difference in the program since his assistant joined the coaching staff in the fall.
"Coach Chakouian has brought a lot of energy to our program," said Forde. "He is a very fun-loving guy and there is not a day that goes by that I don't hear someone laughing from something he said. His personality is contagious, and he brings an heir of confidence with him about what he does. He is an excellent teacher as well, and I think our athletes are really buying into what he is saying. His presence also commands that kind of respect, because he had success in the past and still is successful being a top-20 thrower in the world."
Chakouian also holds certification as a personal trainer by the National Exercise and Sports Trainers Association (NESTA). He has also contributed his time to the MSTCA Clinic the past two years as a guest speaker and clinician.