State leaders created the Salt Lake City-Utah Committee for the Games to inform Utah’s preparation for a future Winter Olympics and Paralympics bid. Utah is shooting to host either the 2030 or 2034 Winter Olympics. The U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Committee chose Salt Lake City in 2018 as a future bid city for the games.
Fraser Bullock, the former chief operating officer for the 2002 Winter Olympics Salt Lake Organizing Committee, was named President and CEO of the newly announced committee. Bullock reflected on Utah’s Olympic experience 18 years ago, Feb. 12, 2002—the fourth day of the Winter Olympics.
"It was so exciting," Bullock said. "We already had U.S. medals in the bank, starting with Shannon Bahrke and then Derek Parra. Beautiful, great legacy. And so, we have all these legacies, memories, facilities, events, but perhaps our most important legacy is our love for the games.”
Bullock says the bidding process has evolved, and it’s now critical to establish an ongoing dialogue with the International Olympics Committee. The Salt Lake City-Utah Committee will analyze the pros and cons for both 2030 and 2034 bids, then make recommendations to local and state leadership. From there, the committee and state will work with the U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Committee, which will take the bid to the IOC.
Utah Olympic Legacy Foundation President and CEO Colin Hilton was named vice chair of the committee. Hilton talked about the continued success of Utah’s Winter Olympics venues as a result of the 1994 legislature’s Olympic legacy resolution. Hilton says it represents one of Utah’s greatest strengths.
“We set very progressive and very visionary ideas in motion, and we deliver on them with enthusiasm and collaboration unseen in any other part of the world,” Hilton said.
Recent U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Hall of Fame inductee, and Park City resident, Chris Waddell is one of the athletes on the committee. The 13-time Paralympic medalist says he’s looking forward to being involved in bringing the games back to Utah because of the uniquely meaningful experience it presents to Utah-based athletes.
“It takes you from obscurity, in some ways—not that athletes are obscure," Waddell said, "but it feels like obscurity, in some ways, that you go and you train and you compete and you do what you do, to all of a sudden there are a whole lot of people who care, and we’d love to be able to share that experience with the athletes.”
The Salt Lake City-Utah Committee has dozens of members, including athletes and representatives from businesses and nonprofits. Park City Mayor Andy Beerman also sits on the committee. Beerman told KPCW Utah’s Olympic bid “aligns well with Park City’s goals to bolster our transportation infrastructure, increase workforce housing, and provide a net zero host community for a net zero Olympics.” Beerman believes Utah has a good chance at winning the bid for either the 2030 or 2034 Winter games.