Jill: Why boxing?
Claude: I participated in team sports when I was younger, football and baseball, but the one-on-one competition of boxing (even though I wasn't all that good) just was always more appealing; particularly as a spectator at a GREAT action fight.
Claude: Not really, I still have all of the friends (the real friends, not just people blowing smoke to try and get something from the Prez) I had when holding office and don't have to deal with the political BS that unfortunately goes with the position.
Claude: The amount of dedication that a top level boxer (or any world class athlete for that matter) has to have is remarkable. There are many men and women who may have the physical ability to be a world class boxer, but they don't have the dedication and heart to make it to the top. Also, having a competent team around the boxer and the boxer having faith in their team is certainly a major factor as well.
And having a major fight, NOT just a fight where a big name champ fights a tune-up against a journeyman opponent that was shown on home TV rather than pay-per-view might help stir up interest as well. I realize this might not fit in with the current business realities of our sport, and I guess I'm showing my age - but I remember when there was a live fight on a major home TV network nearly every weekend.
Jill: How do we compete against the "world belts?" What does being an NABF Champ mean?
As to having to compete against minor so-called "world titles" - if a promoter can advertise a "world championship" for some minor organization and put a few more butts in the seats and maybe have his hometown hero claim to be a "world champ" then I guess we will continue to have these "championships" spring up. Except for marketing ourselves better (and this is a difficult task, I know) I am afraid that we will continue to have to compete with these minor "world championships".
- 4 years as NABF President
- 4 years as NABF Vice-President
- 14 years (+) as NABF Ratings Chairman
- 11 years on WBC Ratings Committee, 4 years
- 10 years as member of WBC Continental
- Americas Championships Committee
- Numerous awards received at conventions
from both organizations
Away from boxing, I am an elected vestry member and treasurer of my church (Holy Trinity Episcopal).
Jill: Who inspired you?
On a boxing level, of course I have much respect for WBC President Jose Sulaiman who is the great leader of modern day boxing and head of what I think is by far the best boxing organization. The former WBC Executive Secretary, Eduardo Lamazon, guided me in my early days as a member of WBC ratings committee and will always have a special place in my thoughts, as well.
Claude: Additional competent and dedicated people coming in to positions of leadership in boxing, and of course more NABF and WBC family fights in the future.