Speaker: Dr Brian Mihalik, University of South Carolina
This presentation will examine the cost of hosting the summer Olympic Games; research on perceived benefits of the Games and an examination of Olympic legacies of the 1996 Atlanta Olympics. Some legacies explored are the Olympic Stadium, the Olympic Village and athletic venues on the campus of the Georgia Institute of Technology and Centennial Olympic Park. This park is the largest center city urban park constructed in the United States in the previous 25 years. Also discussed are non-Olympic venue legacies such as cultural, employment, volunteer and federal government sponsored urban renewal.
One of the most significant Olympic legacies in Atlanta was the Olympic Stadium which transitioned from a track and field venue to an American baseball field venue to, in 2017, an American university football and multi-use complex. The Atlanta Olympic stadium was one of the best Olympic stadiums ever built because it was never built for the Olympics, but designed and constructed for post-games use. Further, the cost of this Olympic venue was paid by Olympic revenues without any taxpayer dollars going to support its construction and debt service.
The presentation will conclude with lessons learned based upon previous summer Olympics. It will put forth for discussion recommendations to the International Olympic Committee and future host cities in order to avoid the massive debt accumulation that has occurred since 1996.
Dr Brian J. Mihalik holds a joint appointment as the William McFall “Mac” Pearce Professor in the School of Hotel, Restaurant and Tourism Management and in the Department of Sport and Entertainment Management at the University of South Carolina. Dr Mihalik was the former Dean of the College of Hospitality, Retail and Sport Management at the University of South Carolina. With more than 20 years of administrative experience in both the academic and public sectors, he has served as an administrator and / or faculty member at six state universities. Additionally, Dr Mihalik served approximately eight years in administration at Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University beginning with his duties as a Department Head and culminating as the Associate Dean of the Graduate School.
Professional affiliations of Dr Mihalik include the Travel and Tourism Research Association (TTRA), International Council of Hotel, Restaurant and International Education (I-CHRIE) and the North American Society for Sport Management. As Dean, Dr Mihalik and his team raised over $34 million in the latest USC Carolina’s Promise capital campaign. Mihalik has published more than 100 articles ranging from refereed journal articles to land grant extension publications and has received over $1million in external grant funding throughout his career. His research on the Olympic Games has appeared in publications such as USA TODAY and Atlanta Journal and Constitution.
Dr Mihalik has been married to his wife, Linda, for 50 years. They have two children, and three grandchildren. He is a skier, scuba diver, hiker, enjoys bodysurfing at the beach and throwing batting practice to his grandchildren. During his college days, Mihalik played three years of baseball for Syracuse's intercollegiate team and continued to play club rugby as a center and scrumhalf for the following 13 years.