Award-winning journalist Mike Kane has been hired as the communications officer for the National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame.
In late April, Kane will succeed Richard Hamilton, who recently announced his plans to retire after 10 years on the museum staff. Hamilton will remain at the museum as a volunteer working on special projects.
"We are very fortunate in having Mike join the museum staff. He brings a wealth of information and knowledge to the position," said Peter H. Hammell, director of the National Museum and Hall of Fame, in announcing the appointment of Kane. "We are also pleased that Dick will remain with us as a volunteer."
Kane will also be taking on some of the duties of communications coordinator Dorothy Ours, who is leaving to complete work on her book about Man o' War, which will be published by St. Martin's Press next spring.
Since 1979, Kane has been a sports writer at the Gazette Newspapers in Schenectady. N.Y. He became the paper's sports columnist in 1990.
Kane has covered Thoroughbred racing for 25 years and is currently the president of the National Turf Writers Association. During his 30-year career he also worked at newspapers in Potsdam, N.Y. and Glens Falls, N.Y., wrote a book on minor league hockey, was an active freelance writer and has been a correspondent for the Blood-Horse
. He has been a volunteer at the museum, serving as the moderator of panel discussions of the Triple Crown, Breeders' Cup and the Saratoga season, since 1995.
"Many times during the past decade I told Dick Hamilton that I wanted his job," Kane said. "I was joking and we laughed about it, mind you, but I really did have an interest in a role like that because it combined racing, history and communications. I am looking forward to moving into the position and dealing with the challenges and opportunities it presents."
Kane, a graduate of the State University of New York College at Potsdam, is a five-time winner of the Red Smith Kentucky Derby Writing Contest.
He was honored by the New York State Associated Press in 2002 for column writing and in 2003 for a feature story on the formation of Sackatoga Stable, the partnership that owns Kentucky Derby and Preakness winner Funny Cide. In the 1980s he was a three-time winner of the James H. Ellery Award for newspaper writing presented annually by the American Hockey League.