Donald Sanford was added to Israel’s Olympic delegation for the 2012 games on Thursday night, after the exceptions committee ruled his recent achievements were at an extremely high level.
Point-zero-nine seconds separated between the sprinter and a medal at the last European Championships, where he placed fourth in the 400-meter dash. His result caused the Israeli Olympic committee to add him to the delegation flying to London 2012.
While at Arizona State University, Sanford met his future wife, an Israeli who was studying overseas, and in 2008 the two married.
In 2010 Sanford began his citizenship process, and in 2012 he represented Israel at the European Championship.
At the contest, Sanford became the first Israeli since Olympic finalist Esther Roth-Shahamorov to reach the finals of a major international track and field competition, narrowly missing the bronze medal.
Born in Los Angeles, Sanford competed for ASU’s Sun Devils at the collegiate level, and was a member of the team that won the national championship in the 4X400 relay race.