October 2012 has not been a good month for Lance Armstrong, the former cycling champion.
The United States Anti-Doping Agency released more than 1,000 pages of evidence resulting from its doping investigation of Armstrong. CNN has reported: “Evidence of Armstrong doping ‘overwhelming,’ agency says.” CNN also provided “Highlights of the Armstrong report.”
Following the release of the USADA evidence, Nike and Anheuser-Busch announced they would not be continuing their endorsement relationships with Armstrong. However, both companies expressed their intentions to continue support of The LIVESTRONG Foundation.
As the doping controversy intensified, Armstrong made the decision to step down as Chairman of The LIVESTRONG Foundation though he will continue to serve on the board. You can read the official statement from LIVESTRONG and Armstrong here.
On August 31, 2012, I first wrote about the Armstrong scandal (“Should Lance Armstrong Resign from LIVESTRONG?”). My post included an unscientific poll. By September 7, 43.94 percent of respondents felt Armstrong should remain as Chairman while 6.82 percent felt he should step aside as Chairman but remain on the board. However, an additional 49.24 percent felt Armstrong should resign from the board. By the way, I shared the poll results and reader comments with LIVESTRONG but received no comment.
While LIVESTRONG maintains that donations to the Foundation have boomed, it remains to be seen what the long-term impact of the scandal will be. Armstrong knows what he did or did not do. He now knows what evidence has been gathered against him. He owes it to those the Foundation serves to do the right thing for them and the Foundation. Armstrong needs to set aside his ego and do what is right. Will his resignation of the Chairman’s post be sufficient to protect the Foundation? Time will tell.
So, what do you think? Did Armstrong do the right thing by resigning as Chairman of LIVESTRONG? Should he have done so sooner? Should he resign from the board? Will the Foundation’s reputation be tainted by Armstrong’s doping scandal? You can weigh-in by commenting below.
That’s what Michael Rosen says… What do you say?
UPDATE (Oct. 22, 2012): The International Cycling Union (UCI) will not appeal the USADA finding instead accepting the investigation’s conclusion. “A landmark day for cycling,” Pat McQuaid, President of the UCI, said at a news conference in Geneva, according to an Associated Press report. “Lance Armstrong has no place in cycling.” In Paris, at another press event, Tour de France Director Christian Prudhomme said, “Lance Armstrong is no longer the winner of the Tour de France from 1999-2005.” Prudhomme also announced that he wants Armstrong to payback his prize money, totaling $3.85 million.
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