A gifted athlete with world-record speed, Ron Brown was born in Los Angeles in 1961. Following his high school graduation, Ron attended Arizona State University (ASU) where he continued to be proficient in both football and track and field. In football, Ron played his first three seasons as a cornerback before moving into the position of wide receiver in his senior year. At ASU, Ron demonstrated his amazing athletic abilities. In one season, he caught 19 passes for 395 yards and five touchdowns. The highlight of his college football career occurred in the 1982 Fiesta Bowl when he caught a 52-yard touchdown pass that led the Sun Devils to victory. This was just the first of many moments for which Ron Brown would be remembered.
When he left ASU, Ron took with him more than championship; he also took the school record in the 100-meter dash at 10.15 seconds. It was actually this victory that led Ron to his next challenge. In 1983, he turned down the opportunity to be a second-round draft pick of the Cleveland Browns, wishing instead to maintain his amateur status so he could compete in the 1984 Los Angeles Olympics. This proved t be a smart move because Ron and the other three members of the 4 x 100-meter relay team earned Olympic gold and set a World Record for the U.S. and Ron placed fourth in the 100-meter race.
Ron’s good fortune continued when he signed on with the Los Angeles Rams as a second-round draft pick just days after the Olympics ended. He spent four successful years with the Rams. In 1985, Ron had a record-breaking season, returning two kickoffs, in one game, for touchdowns, thus tying a 19-year record set by Tim Brown. He was named NFC offensive player of the week, chosen All-Pro and selected to be on the NFC Pro Bowl team as a kick returner. Ron followed this momentous year by catching a career-high 26 passes for 521 yards and by winning the NFL’s Fastest man competition, and setting an even record, thereby establishing himself as a force with both his hands and his feet.
In 1987, Ron announced his desire to once again concentrate on his track and field career in order to compete on the 1988 U.S. Olympic team. In 1989, Ron led the NFL in kickoff returns with 47. In 1990, the Los Angeles Raiders signed him as a defensive back. He returned 157 more during this career for a total of 3,662 yards, four touchdowns and an average of 23.3 yards per return.
As a former world-class athlete, Ron Brown knows what type of dedication and will it takes to succeed at the highest level. His commitment to excellence and work in championing social causes are especially appropriate to the express dedication to addressing issues of social inequity.
Now retired from professional sports, Ron lives in Hacienda Heights where he is Business Affairs Director for the NFL “Goals for Life” mentoring at-risk children.