Jenny Ledrick-Bradt to be Inducted Into Athletic Hall of Fame

Jenny Ledrick-Bradt to be Inducted Into Athletic Hall of Fame

With the second annual Hall of Fame induction ceremony coming up this Friday, Jenny Ledrick-Bradt is honored to be inducted into the FHC Hall of Fame. TCT had the honor of interviewing her and seeing her past and present accomplishments.


Q:What does this nomination mean to you?

I am honored to be nominated.  My children are not impressed with my athletic ability, so hopefully being recognized to be worthy as a Hall of Fame “athlete” will help them realize that I was young once too.

Q: What is it like being nominated for things that you did in the past, that you may have forgotten about but is remembered by others?

A: It is always fun to take a look back.  During those high school years, I think I worked on one goal at a time but I never stepped back and took a collective look at the accomplishments.

Q: Have you ever taken a moment to remember the moment where you won your state title for the 3200? What did that feel like?

A: That was a very memorable experience.  I had taken second place in the cross country state meet my Junior and Senior year, and I was prepared to take second place again.  It was my last high school race.  I knew that Heather Slay from East Grand Rapids High School was going to compete in the 3200 and she was a faster runner than me.  The day of the meet was exceptionally hot and humid, and she had already run a couple events.  She dropped out of the 3200 during the second mile of the race, and I realized I had an opportunity.  Luckily I was prepared and I was able to kick the final 200 meters and win the race.  Ironically, that season I was not awarded All-Conference honors as Heather won the 1600 and 3200 (I placed second), but I was the state champion.  (I hope they have changed the way All-Conference honors are selected in the following years.)

Q: What are some of your favorite memories from high school?

A: Most of my favorite memories include running cross country and track.  We had so much fun together.  Back in the mid-80’s there was still quite a bit of space undeveloped around the high school.  We enjoyed running trails and finding our own way back around to the school.  Those were days when we didn’t pay attention to our watch or our pace.  College running was a very different experience.  I also remember when we moved into the “new building”.  When I was a freshman (1983), the high school was made up of separate buildings and we had to go outside between classes.  We wore our coats most of the day, so when we moved into a single building, I had to start thinking a bit more about what I was wearing to school!

Q: What did you have to do to achieve that moment and goal (ex.: training)?  and What did you have to give up for this achievement?

A: I worked hard.  My dad has a saying, “you only have fun when you are working your hardest” and I completely agree.  I did not think of my training as a sacrifice, but something I did for fun.  I have had the opportunity to watch both of my sons work their way to state titles.  My oldest was a member of the MN State Champion football team in 2013, and my younger son a member of the MN State Champion wrestling team in 2014. (Sons are 19 and 17 now, and my daughter is 13.)  I was completely filled with pride at their hard work and accomplishment.  Winning as a team is a complicated feat requiring hard work, extraordinary effort, and a bit of luck.  An individual title has many less variables but does require the same three things.

Q: When leaving behind that legacy, what did you hope that future athletes would take from your story and learn?

A: I would hope that all track and cross country athlete realize that goals are important and the best goals are “internal”, meaning always do better than the last effort; run faster every race.  There will always be runners faster and the most important thing is to concentrate on improving your own performance every time.  Making a goal of winning a title is never a sure thing, but setting a goal to be faster than the previous effort is always attainable.

Q: If you did not know, you still hold a record at FHC for the 3200. How does it feel to know that and did you expect this?

A: I did not think that record would stand this long.  When I was in high school, women’s athletics were just becoming more popular.  Title nine gave women athletes many more opportunities.  Back in the mid-80’s all we had was track, but now girls can compete and specialize in many more sports like soccer and lacrosse.  So, many of the girls that would be able to run faster than that time, are now able to enjoy other team sports and opportunities.  I lack the athletic skill required to play those sports, always being more of a left-right-left-right athlete, so I would have always been just a runner, but I am happy to see so many girls involved in organized sports.

Q: Is there anything else you would like to add?

A: FHC provided me with such a great education that I was prepared for college.  Because I was so well prepared, I was able to keep up my grades, stay in my major, work toward graduate school and ultimately the career I have today.  The strong foundation in math and science specifically allowed me to be successful.