Women’s Hall of Fame – 2010



“It’s all about friendships and relationships across the US and World!”

~ Cathy Marksteiner


Coming Soon!
Cathy Marksteiner- Award & Photo Slide Show Presentation

Cathy, a self proclaimed ‘military brat’ was born 1958 in Ardmore, OK. She is a mother of two children, Tony and Liz, and wife to Joe since 1978. Besides being Mom, she her career consists of EMT, firefighter and paramedic.

31 Year in the sport of Powerlifting, Cathy started off her career helping her husband Joe in meets, being the score keeper (back in the days were poster board and Magic markers were used). She watched the meet and had a ‘I can do that’ attitude, which prompted her to get a powerlifting belt and after 2 month of training, she competed in the Hawaii State meet.

Since her first meet, Cathy did her first Nationals in 1982, and most recently has competed in Women’s Nationals, Raw Nationals (setting American and National records) and also on the IPF World platform, medaling at Master World and Master Bench Worlds.

Cathy was there at the inception of the ADFPA in 1983, and been a Meet Director, Coach of the Air Force Academy, a Referee for 22 years (now currently an IPF Cat II), the Collegiate Chair for 13 years (’88-’01) and most recently the OMT Drug Testing Chair.

Her most memorable events were: Being there when Brother Bennett pitched the ‘Drug Free Powerlifting Org’; Participating in the vote to join the USA Powerlifting as the IPF affiliate; Coming back as a competitor after a 13-year break at ’05 Women’s Nationals; Coaching Dave Ricks on a World Record setting day; and being able to help at the first ADFPA Military Nationals in 1993 when her husband Joe (Colonel) and Captain Larry Maile were the meet directors and Johnny Graham was a competitor.


“She is a hard working dedicated individual that gives over 100% to the sport of powerlifting.”

~ Dave Ricks



“Never in my lifetime of this sport have I met someone who has given so much of their time for such little.”

~ Johnny Graham


A Word from David L. Ricks,

What can I say about Cathy Marksteiner, but that she is an exceptional person who lives for the sport of Powerlifting. She is very instrumental with youth, and adults alike volunteering her time and experience to assist those in need whether it be training or officiating at a local, state, national, or international meet.

She has assisted in all my meets even after working long hours as an EMT. She has trained with me to prepare for various meets of her own and taught me new techniques on how to better my lifts. Not only this, she along with her husband has officiated at all my meets ensuring they run according to USA Powerlifting regulations.

It was without hesitation that I nominated Cathy to be inducted in the USA Powerlifting Women’s Hall of Fame as she is very deserving of this award.

Thank you Cathy for all you’ve done to make USA Powerlifting an enjoyable sport.

Overview of Cathy:

1980 Hawaii State Championships

-Born in 1958
-Married to Joe Marksteiner
-Two children, Tony and Liz



Titles Held


Positions Held

Cathy’s most memorable event related to powerlifting?


1995 – 1st Place


What do we really know about Cathy, the Weigh in Referee? Mmmmm?
(Then again, do we really want to know?)

What is your personal background? (when, where you were born/ raised, your family, your career)?

I was born an Air Force “military brat” in 1958. Three months later, we closed down the Air Force Base in Ardmore, Oklahoma and moved to Tennessee. The first of many moves. Since I was a “military brat”, my home town was both everywhere and nowhere, but mostly where-ever my dad was stationed at the time. My dad retired from the Air Force while we were in Arkansas. Though I can appreciate team loyalty, I did not become a Razorback “Hog” fan or devotee. I mean a pig for a mascot? Really!!!!

Anyway, I was fortunate to meet Joe at Little Rock Air Force Base, while he was going through C-130 pilot training. Ten weeks after we met, he left for his first military assignment—-Hawaii!!! Really rough for him, but someone has to bear the difficult assignments. Anyway, about 2 years after we met, we got married, and I was again an Air Force Dependent. With Joe’s military career, the moves resumed. Between my Dad and Husband, I have lived in 10 different states, 3 of them twice. As a kid, I moved every 2 years. With Joe, we moved every 3 years. Between the moves, wanting to volunteer in my kid’s classroom and participate with Joe in the Military stuff, the decision to be a Stay at Home Mom came easily. But, I never seemed to be home. Field trips, hiking, science trips, home science experiments, exploring the region around our current assignment, National Parks and long drives to see family (usually 12 hours one way to the nearest relative) with the kids meant I was not “staying at home” much at all.

I have always had an interest in Public safety-CPR, First Aid, Water Safety, Medical emergencies. When we moved to Ohio, I became a volunteer EMT for our Fire Department. Because of the powerlifting, I successfully passed the entrance test to become a firefighter. In 1999, I added “Firefighter” to the volunteer description. My plans to become a Paramedic slowed in 2000, when our 14 yr. old daughter, Liz, was diagnosed with Stage 3 Non-Hodgkins Lymphoma. We lost her 16 months later. So, back to school to fulfill the promise to Liz “Promise me you will become a Paramedic”, and to myself. I became a full time Firefighter-Paramedic in 2005. While I loved being a Stay at Home Mom, I can say I waited a lifetime to do a job I love.

Have you always been involved in sports? And how did you get started in powerlifting?

[And cue theme song from “Love Story”—}
“Where do I begin, to tell the story of a “… So-Powerlifting-just how did I get into this money making sport? Sadly, I just was not a good fit for the predominate High School sports, namely, cheerleading, drill team and basketball. Though I tried other sports-Gymnastics (fell off the vault and tore my knee up). Then a few years later, while taking a course for an easy A, I tore the same knee up AGAIN. I mean after all, I was a swimming and Lifesaving teacher for the Red Cross. What should have been an easy A, got me a knee surgery. Joe was now a part of my life, (before he left me behind for Hawaii) and he introduced me to the universal machine. So, for rehab I went back to it. Yoo Hoo!!!

Joe took up powerlifting in Hawaii to stay in shape and flexible as an alternative to the gymnastics he did in college at the Air Force Academy. Then, the DAY came. Joe was lifting in a meet. I was the scorekeeper (remember the days of poster board and magic markers for the audience scoring). I watched the meet, told Joe, “I think I can do that”. Next day, bought a single ply leather belt. 2 Months later, first meet and came close to setting a Hawaii State DL record in my first meet. 3 years later (1982) I went to my first Women’s Nationals (USPF) in Opelika, Alabama. Jan Todd was the meet Director. Joe and I became AFDPA members in 1986; I did my second Women’s Nationals in 1989, and 1992

1980 PACAF Powerlifting Meet
What is your most memorable event related to powerlifting?

One of my favorite questions to ask my kids and hubby after a movie-“What was your favorite part?” Of course, I always ask first, because I have more than one. Dilemma!!!
So, my favorite(S)-
1982 – Brother Bennett is here, at the USPF Women’s Nationals, to pitch the idea of a “Drug Tested, Drug Free Powerlifting Organization”
1988 – Invited by ADFPA President Dennis Brady to be the Collegiate Chair. I was Collegiate Chair from 1998 – 2001. (Joe and I were the Air Force Academy Coaches from 1986- 1990. 2 National Championships, one 2ndplace).
1997 – I am a part of the ADFPA NGB, meeting in Chicago that voted to become the USA Powerlifting and petition the IPF to accept the USA Powerlifting as the US representative. And so, I was there for the idea to become reality for both the ADFPA and the USA Powerlifting.
2005 – I qualified, after a 13 year break from competing, as a Raw Lifter for Women’s Nationals, Open Division.
2009 – I am privileged to be present and help David Ricks have a great Masters Nationals meet, going 8 for 9, and 2 World Records.
2009 – Being invited to be a part of the USA Powerlifting World Masters Team, competing in the Czech Republic.

But, truthfully, my “powerlifting family” is the most important and memorable part of powerlifting for me. We, as a family, would go help at meets (Military Nationals, Collegiate Nationals, Blacksmith Open in Indiana, etc). Joe and I would referee. Our kids, Tony and Liz would help work the scoring table, post results, help clean up. When we lost Liz, we had to make a decision. Could we return to powerlifting, the activity we did so often as a strongly knit family? Were we strong enough? The decision was simple really-We would be turning our back on our family strengths and history if we stopped helping at powerlifting meets, the very activity we had done as a family. And so, our powerlifting family, our history and memories of family times, and our need for purpose helped us move forward with healing. I know Liz would have kicked us if we had stopped helping at meets.

What is your favorite part of the sport of powerlifting? (training? Competing? Personal growth?)

I love the friendships and relationships. Our powerlifting family is across the US and around the World. We celebrate the victories with each other. We support, hug and lift each other up when things are down. But for the weight side, I really enjoy the training. Where can I go now?

Who do you credit with being the most influential in your powerlifting career?

The man in my life and heart, my husband, Joe. He has encouraged me and supported me to try this new sport. To push myself to new levels. To work for new goals. He has an ability to remember all of my achievements and numbers, when I have forgotten. Because of Joe, I have achieved more, become more and done more in powerlifting and life.

If you could impart one pearl of wisdom to every new powerlifter, what would that be?

Like most things, powerlifting is about setting new goals (the lifts for the meet), working toward them, and executing. You do this personally, professionally, financially, socially, even recreationally (I want to hike the Rockies, the Pacific Coast Trail, fish a Bass Tournament, etc.) Sometimes you will succeed. Other times, you will not have the success you worked so hard for.
But, in my opinion, the greatest “pearl” in powerlifting is the people you will meet. The friendships you will develop. Powerlifting gives you the introduction to another lifter. And while you have powerlifting in common, powerlifting alone does not define your life or who you are. The adventure and fun is in exploring and learning about “the rest of the story” with your Powerlifting family.

Do you have any specific goals for your future powerlifting?

Continue to lift. I missed competing. It feels good to be on the platform again.
Work hard and try to keep up with Donna Marts and Ruth Welding, or at least not fall too far behind.
Qualify for the 2012 USA Powerlifting World Master Powerlifting Team going to St. Catherine’s, Canada.
Learn how to get MORE OUT of a Bench Shirt!!!!
Become a Cat I referee for the IPF.

What other thoughts would you like to add?

When I look back over the years, I was there when the idea of a “Drug Free Powerlifting” organization was shared.
I was there and voted for the transition from ADFPA to USA Powerlifting, and the petition to become the IPF affiliate.
I was there when Joe and Larry Maile (yes, then USAF Capt. Larry Maile) were the meet directors for the 1993 ADFPA Military National. This started our Military Nationals that continues today. Johnny Graham came from Germany to compete at Norton Air Force Base, California.

I love competing in a sport that challenges me physically and mentally. And I love the people I have met who share through the sport.

2010 Women’s Hall of Fame Sponsors

Women’s Hall of Fame Fund
Titan Support Systems
Quest Nutrition
Robert Keller
Donna Marts,
George Marts
Christy Newman

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