Coach Jim

James (Jim) Lafferty is much more than a successful businessman and CEO. He has a richly diverse life, a key part which is “giving back” through athletic coaching.

Many of his successful approaches he has applied to organizations comes from a strong foundation in youth athletics coaching, going back to teaching inner-city kids in Cincinnati Ohio in the early 1980s.

As Jim says, “Everything I ever needed to learn about motivating people I learned from coaching at Forest Park in the early 80s, when my challenge was to get young 13 and 14 year olds to buy into my program versus the options they had on the streets for drugs and easy money. I have applied these principles of envisioning and motivation through discipline in my organizations since with great success.”

Jim has a rich and lengthy history within the athletics/track and field realm, coaching numerous Olympic Athletes and medalists across multiple national teams.

A History of Running

James running in nigerian race

James finishing a 12 KM race in Lagos, Nigeria where he helped organize “Run with the Mayor” in the village of Oshodi, Nigeria, to help give street kids a positive outlet for their energy.

Jim Lafferty has been an active runner and coach for a total of 40 years. A 400 meter runner and high jumper at St. Xavier High School in Cincinnati, Ohio, he “doubled up” starting at 17 years old when he became also the head Track and Field Coach of St. Vivian’s, his former grade school in 1980.

During College at University of Cincinnati, he competed in distances from 400 meters to 5000 meters, and was named Head Coach Track and Field at Forest Park School in Cincinnati. During this time he developed a program that was city champions for 4 consecutive years, and placed multiple team members onto the US Junior National Team, including Gold Medalists in the 100, 200, 110 hurdles races.

Jim went on to be a founder of the YMCA Striders Track and Cross Country team alongside World Champion Ultra Marathoner Scott Miller, and was named to the TAC (The Athletics Congress) Regional committee as head of sprints and hurdles. It was during this time that Jim ran his first marathon, The Columbus Marathon, in 1982, with a longest run of 14 KMs and under a “dare” from another runner!

After graduating with a degree in psychology and physiology, Jim continued post-college to be involved in athletics, running marathons with his family and coaching and organizing races. He has race directed or been on the organizing committees of some of the world’s premier marathons, including Florence Italy Marathon, Cincinnati Marathon, Warsaw Poland, and Geneva Switzerland Marathons.

Corporate and Community Athletic Coaching

James Laferty and P&G Running Team

James with his P&G Philippines running team, after a successful race. He eventually led over 150 employees in Philippines to finish their first marathon!

Upon entry into the marketing and branding world, Jim’s passion for running never waned.

During his career with Procter and Gamble, he organized and trained the corporate marathon teams that led to over 3000 P&G employees running their first marathon, and was profiled in the publication, “Marathon and Beyond”.

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James with the Ikoyi running club that he founded in Nigeria.

Jim later joined Coca Cola in Nigeria and became a key organizer of athletics in Nigeria. He organized the first ever women’s empowerment races in West Africa and formed Nigeria’s largest running club, the Ikoyi Eva Water Team. Jim is Founder of Athletics Connection Nigeria which focuses on obtaining athletic scholarships and educational opportunities for gifted Nigerian runners in the USA.

Jim continues to coach elite runners and was the national Marathon team coach for Nigeria in London Olympics, as well as coaching top ranked Athletes for the Philippines national team. But his real joy is coaching first-timers to finishing their first marathons. His favorite race is The Bull Runner Dream Marathon, which he co-founded, held annually in the Philippines.

Jim currently conducts “Weekly Speedwork” sessions, coaching local runners near his home in the Philippines.
Jim and his family are all avid runners, with the family having run over 75 full marathons and 10 ultra-marathons, and still going strong!

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James with participants of the Bull Runner Dream Marathon. A marathon co-created by James to help beginners complete their first marathon.

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