Jack Warner has over 50 years of experience in the track & field and cross country coaching arena. Beginning his career in 1954, his impressive span includes coaching stints at Cornell University, Colgate University, as well as his current tenure at William Smith College (1995-present).
A 1951 graduate of Syracuse University with a bachelor’s degree in liberal arts and education, Warner served three years active duty in the U.S. Marine Corps following graduation. Upon discharge from the Marines, he spent a year as a physical education teacher-coach in the North Syracuse Central School System.
Warner then served as an assistant coach at the University of Kansas from 1955 to 1956, where he also received a master’s degree in education prior to his move to Colgate. He served as co-coach of the Uganda Olympic Team in 1960.
In 11 years at Colgate, Warner’s overall record stood at an impressive 135-82-3. He continued that success at Cornell, where he coached five Olympians and 24 NCAA All Americans, compiling an overall record of 267-149-4. He retired in 1990 before returning to coaching in 1995 to head the William Smith program. In 2000, William Smith had its first runner reach the national championship meet: Amy Young finished 33rd overall, also earning All American honors. Warner’s Herons have been honored by the Cross Country Coaches Association as an All Academic Team 13 consecutive times.
Warner has also contributed to the sport outside of his coaching duties. He has been a key figure in the success of the Great Heron Road Race, which has raised thousands of dollars for the fight against breast cancer. Also, as a New York State-certified track & field and cross country official, Warner served as referee of the NCAA Division III Indoor Track Championships in 1996.
Befitting his impressive career, Warner has received numerous honors. In 1978 he was named the NCAA District II Men’s Track Coach of the Year, and in 1983, the District II Women’s Cross Country Co-Coach of the Year. In 1988, his alma mater honored him as a Letter Winner of Distinction. Also, he is a member of the Rome (NY) Sports Hall of Fame, the Cornell Sports Hall of Fame, and the Niagara Association of USA Track & Field Hall of Fame.