Eugene Oree Foster
Eugene Oree Foster was a long-time resident of Fort Defiance, Arizona where he was born and raised. His late father, Harold Y. Foster, was a Navajo Code Talker and his mother is Margaret Foster.
As a sports writer, Foster covered all sports at all levels including professional, college, high school, junior high school, elementary school, and community sports and leagues. He was also a heralded athlete at Window Rock High School (1968-71) in basketball, baseball, cross-country and track and field. He earned a college athletic scholarship to run cross-country and compete in track and field at Central Arizona College. Foster played semi-professional baseball with the Fort Defiance Indians. He was also a varsity school baseball coach and an assistant cross-country coach at Window Rock High and coached a little league baseball team, the Fort Defiance Indians.
He received his AA Degree from Central Arizona College, BS Degree in Journalism from the Arizona State University, and MA Degree from the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism at Arizona State University.
Foster was a recipient of many awards including the Native American Journalist Sportswriter for 15 consecutive years, the prestigious Arizona Interscholastic Association (AIA) Skip Bryant Media Award in 2010 and 2016, and the award for excellence, the Wall of Fame Award from Central Arizona College, for his outstanding journalism, as a historian, and a photojournalist. He was also a sports correspondent for Arizona State University Football, the Arizona Diamondbacks Baseball, Arizona’s Phoenix Suns Basketball, Professional Bull Riding (PBR), Ty Murray and Associates, the Arizona Interscholastic Activities (AIA) 365Sports, the New Mexico Activities Association (NMAA) Sports, the Arizona Republic, and the Gallup Independent Sports. These sports awards and recognitions were meant with excellent award-winning sports journalism reviews.
As a sports editor for over 30 years at the Navajo Times newspaper, he established the Navajo Times All-Area Athletic Sports Teams, established the Arizona vs New Mexico Basketball Classic, founder of the Navajo Nation Sports Hall of Fame, founder of the Native American Basketball Invitation (NABI) for Youth, and founder of the Arizona Diamondbacks Baseball Native American Day for 10 consecutive years. He also recognized many athletes in the professional rodeo arena with the Indian National Finals Rodeo (NIFR), and the National Finals Rodeo (NFR) Association, and locally with the All-Indian Rodeo Cowboy Association (AIRCA), the Navajo Nation Cowboy Association (NNRCA).
Oree Foster died on 3/1/2023 and will be missed.