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Jim Worrall

Full name: James "Jim" Worrall
Gender: Male
Height: 6-5 (196 cm)
Born: June 23, 1914 in Bury, Greater Manchester, Great Britain
Died: October 9, 2011 in Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Affiliations: Westmount/McGill University
Country: CAN Canada
Sport: Athletics


Born in England, Jim Worrall moved to Canada in 1922 as his family became involved in the textile business. By 1934 he was already proficient enough as a track and field athlete to compete at that year's British Empire Games, where he won a silver medal in the 120 yard hurdles event and finished fourth in the 440 yard hurdles. The following year he received a Bachelor of Science degree from Montreal's McGill University and was still in good enough form to compete at the 1936 Summer Olympics, where he competed in the 110 and 400 metre hurdles, although he failed to make it past the first round in either event. Perhaps more importantly, however, he was selected as Canada's flag bearer in the opening ceremony, likely due to his status as the tallest member of the delegation.

Worrall retired from active competition soon after and received a law degree from Osgoode Hall Law School, but his impact on the Canadian sporting scene was far from over. He worked as a schoolmaster, lawyer, and public notary, but soon became involved with the Canadian Olympic Committee, ascending to its presidency in 1964 and holding that position through 1968. He helped write the constitution of that organization before taking his talents international in 1967 by becoming an IOC member, a role in which he would become deeply involved with for over two decades. Until his 1989 retirement, he served on the Legislation Commission (1968-1972), the IOC Executive Board (1974-1979), and the Juridical Commission (1984-1985), as well as chairing the Commission on Revision of the Charter (1982-1990). Nationally he served as the Chef de Mission for the 1956 and 1960 Canadian Olympic delegations and was on the board of directors for the organizing committees of the 1976 Summer and 1988 Winter Olympics. He was made an honourary member of both the COC and the IOC, an officer of the Order of Canada (1976), a member of Canada's Sports Hall of Fame (1987), an inductee of the Olympic Hall of Fame (1991), a member of the McGill University Sports Hall of Fame (1998), and received the Olympic Order in Silver and the Canadian Olympic Order in Gold. His autobiography, "My Olympic Journey: Sixty Years with Canadian Sport and the Olympic Games", was published in 2000 and, at the time of his death in October 2011, he was recognized as Canada's oldest living Olympian.

Personal Bests: 110H – 15.0y (1935); 400H – 54.6y (1934).


Games Age City Sport Event Team NOC Rank Medal
1936 Summer 22 Berlin Athletics Men's 110 metres Hurdles Canada CAN 3 h3 r1/3
1936 Summer 22 Berlin Athletics Men's 400 metres Hurdles Canada CAN 4 h2 r1/3

Men's 110 metres Hurdles

Games Age City Sport Country Phase Unit Rank T(H)
1936 Summer 22 Berlin Athletics Canada Round One Heat Three 3 15.6

Men's 400 metres Hurdles

Games Age City Sport Country Phase Unit Rank T(H)
1936 Summer 22 Berlin Athletics Canada Round One Heat Two 4 55.5
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