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Track Star Turned Anti-Doping Lawyer: Meet Doriane Lambelet Coleman

Growing up, Doriane Lambelet Coleman did not see herself as an athlete, but she always had a talent for running. She moved back and forth between her home country of Switzerland and the United States as a kid, and she never found a stable community until she started running track in high school.

She became a track star for the 800 meter race after becoming the U.S. National Collegiate Indoor Champion in 1982 and the Swiss National Champion in 1982 and 1983. But Coleman eventually decided to hang up the track shoes and become a lawyer. Her work helped establish the first random out-of-competition drug-testing program for USA Track & Field.  

She later prosecuted and defended athletes in doping cases, including former Olympic runner Mary Decker Slaney in the mid-1990s. Today, Coleman is a law professor at Duke University in Durham. Host Frank Stasio talks with Coleman about her upbringing in Switzerland and the U.S., competing in a sport plagued by doping allegations, and drug-testing programs today.​

Charlie Shelton-Ormond is a podcast producer for WUNC.
Longtime NPR correspondent Frank Stasio was named permanent host of The State of Things in June 2006. A native of Buffalo, Frank has been in radio since the age of 19. He began his public radio career at WOI in Ames, Iowa, where he was a magazine show anchor and the station's News Director.
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