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Steve and Liz McConkey Going on 43 Years of Sports Ministry, Plus 11 Olympics

March 20, 2024

MADISON, Wis.,  March 20, 2024 /Christian Newswire/ -- 4 WINDS is a worldwide sports ministry, mostly in track and field. Steve McConkey is the President. In 1988, Steve and Liz started 4 WINDS, beginning as a USA National Track and Field Club. After 1992, 4 WINDS dropped the team so they could work with athletes on all teams. Liz has been one of the board of directors since the beginning.

Born in Des Moines, Iowa in 1955, Steve went to Dunlap Elementary School (now non-existent) until the seventh grade. During that time, the school took field trips to the Drake Relays in Des Moines. Steve was introduced to world-class track and field during that time.

In 1968, his family moved to the Danbury, Wisconsin area, near Dairyland. Steve attended Webster schools, graduating in 1974. In 1971, he started running and competed as a distance runner. From 1971 through 2016, Steve ran 65,865 miles for 45 years. That is 4.01 miles per day.

Steve graduated with honors from Webster High School (WI), Minnesota State University, and received a Master of Public Health from Western Kentucky University in 1981. He ran at all schools other than Western Kentucky where he was a graduate assistant coach. Also, Steve ran at the University of Wisconsin-Superior before transferring to Minnesota State in Mankato.

In 1977, MSU was third at the NCAA Division 2 Cross Country Championships. In 1980, WKU finished first in the Ohio Valley Conference with a perfect fifteen points and placed sixth at the NCAA Division 1 Cross Country Championships.

From 1982 through 1992, Steve was a USA National Track and Field Club Coach for Athletes in Action (82-83), Lay Witnesses for Christ (83-88), and 4 WINDS (88-92). Athletes were ranked ninety-two times. After the 1992 season, 4 WINDS dropped the team to do ministry work with all track and field athletes.

Steve and Liz have lived in Bowling Green (Kentucky), Eugene (Oregon), Dallas-Fort Worth, and Minneapolis-St. Paul. The ministry is now headquartered in Madison, Wisconsin. They split their time between Danbury and Madison.

The 2024 Olympics will be in Paris this summer. This will be their eleventh Olympic year since beginning in 1981. 4 WINDS plans to have an outreach at the Olympic Trials in Eugene, Oregon in June, where they can minister to hundreds of athletes and coaches.

“We are looking forward to doing ministry work during this Olympic year,” states McConkey. “The USA has many great athletes who plan to make a big impact. We have opportunities to share the gospel and to encourage Christians in their faith. We are grateful for our supporters who have made our work possible through the years. Without their prayers and support, we could not do what we do.”

Steve has had over 300 radio, article, and TV interviews that have went worldwide, mostly during the last six years. He became a Christian in 1976 after reading the Bible at the University of Wisconsin-Superior student center.

Steve and Liz have been married for 44 years. They have three married children and many grandchildren. Liz has a Bachelor of Science in Education with a Science Minor with honors from the University of Wisconsin-Superior. She has taught art and sewing at the University of Wisconsin, Madison Area Technical College, and in various community education programs.

Liz has worked in the media at various USA Olympic Trials and USA Track and Field Championships. She grew up in Mankato, Minnesota and went to Mankato West High School.






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