Veronica Campbell-Brown, a former NCAA track champion at the University of Arkansas and Jamaican Olympic gold medalist, will receive an honorary degree during the all-university commencement ceremony on May 13th at 8:30 a.m. at the Bud Walton Arena.
Campbell-Brown graduated from the Sam M. Walton College of Business at the University of Arkansas in 2006, earning a degree in business administration. During her illustrious career, she participated in five Olympic Games, securing three gold, three silver, and two bronze medals. As a Razorback, she set a new collegiate record and gained All-American honors after winning the 200-meter sprint at the 2004 NCAA Indoor Championships.
Growing up in Trelawney, Jamaica, Veronica Campbell Brown discovered her passion for running early on. Her talent was recognized by a primary school teacher, who encouraged her to pursue a track and field career. Over the next two decades, Campbell Brown dominated international sprints, amassing 21 medals across five Olympic Games and seven World Championships.
Campbell Brown began her career with gold medals at the 1999 IAAF World Youth Championships. She later became the first woman to win both the 100- and 200-meter sprints the following year at the World Juniors. At the age of 18, she joined Jamaica’s 4×100-meter relay team for the 2000 Olympics, securing a silver medal. A track scholarship to Barton County Community College in Kansas allowed her to win four national junior titles before transferring to the University of Arkansas, where she set a new collegiate record in the 200-meter sprint at the 2004 NCAA Indoor Championships.
After turning professional, Campbell Brown continued her education as a marketing major in the Sam M. Walton College of Business. Her Olympic success included three gold, three silver, and two bronze medals, while her World Championship record boasts five gold, seven silver, and one bronze. Campbell Brown is the first Caribbean woman to win an Olympic sprint title and the first woman to win the 100-meter title at the World Youth Championships, World Junior Championships, World Championships, and Olympic Games. She is also one of only three athletes to win the 200-meter dash in two consecutive Olympiads.
In 2006, amid her demanding running schedule, Campbell Brown graduated from the University of Arkansas with a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration. She married fellow University of Arkansas alumnus and Jamaican sprinter Omar Brown the following year. After retiring from professional track and field in 2021, she was inducted into the University of Arkansas Sports Hall of Honor and the Arkansas Sports Hall of Fame.
Today, Campbell Brown is an entrepreneur, motivational speaker, author, philanthropist, mother of two, and former UNESCO ambassador. She established the Veronica Campbell Brown Foundation to help underrepresented young girls access high school education and launched VCB FIT, an online activewear brand. As a virtual speaker, she offers strategies to cope with stress for corporate and university teams and individuals. As a UNESCO Champion for Sport Ambassador, she actively advocates for gender mainstreaming for women and has authored two inspirational books on achieving fulfillment.