USOC CEO steps down

March 6, 2009 9:03:33 AM PST
The head of the U.S. Olympic Committee, Jim Scherr, has called it quits. The resignation has led to questions of whether it will hurt Chicago's chances at winning the 2016 Games.

The surprise shakeup at the top of the U.S. Olympic Committee comes just one month before Chicago is due to host a meeting to try to secure the Olympic bid.

"Timing is unfortunate. I don't know that it would make a big difference before or after the IOC visit. The IOC visit, they will come in and do their work. This will not be a factor for them," said Pat Ryan, Chairman, Chicago 2016 bid committee.

Scherr was the CEO of the U.S. Olympic Committee. His resignation comes less than a month before a delegation from the International Olympic Committee visits Chicago. That visit next month is one of the most important meetings before the IOC announces which city will host the 2016 Summer Games.

Ryan said he believes that despite Scherr's departure, Chicago's chances of hosting the Summer Games remains good.

"He was involved but not very directly involved in the international outreach," Ryan said. "Bob Stivertlik runs that part of that. That continues. We have very strong relationships with many other leaders and high-quality people at the U.S. Olympic Committee."

Scherr has not said why he is stepping down. He held the post for six years. Stephanie Streator replaces Scherr.

"Change is inevitable," Ryan said. "We have a very good interim CEO in Stephanie Streator, who is on the OSC board and she has been on the Chicago 2016 board."

Chicago is one of four finalists for the 2016 Olympics. The International Olympic Committee makes its decision in October.