For many months now I have been travelling the world to meet members of the global Athletics Family and discuss their views on the future of our sport ahead of the IAAF Congress in Beijing.
As a member of the media covering our sport you will know all about demanding schedules!
So many people gave their time and shared their expertise and insight to help me formulate my programe for the Presidency of the IAAF, and I am truly grateful to each and every one of them.
This album is personal mark of my appreciation, and I am delighted to forward a copy to you.
It is a photographic record of my journeys and of many of the memorable moments I have shared with my many dear friends in athletics worldwide.
My meetings and discussions have strengthened my belief that athletics can only ever be as strong as its National Federations, and that the key role of the IAAF is to provide the service, support and resource you need to operate effectively to promote and manage our sport in your countries and produce the next generation of world-class athletes.
It also reminded me that no two countries are alike. Each has different concerns and different needs and each requires different things from the IAAF. That’s why I am committed to creating individual development plans for National Federations among other initiatives to help the amazing people in athletics around the world.
My priority is to increase the support that National Federations receive from the IAAF. Financially I have pledged to double the administration grant to a minimum of $30,000 per year, or at least $120,000 over the four year period of the first Presidential term.
I also intend to generate additional funding by exploring sources of revenue from governments, foundations and other bodies in order to unlock money for our sport because of the positive impact it has on health, education and social wellbeing among young people – a key objective for many of these organisations. I will work tirelessly to use my personal worldwide network of high level business contacts to generate financial additional support for athletics.
Critically, I will build a team of top marketing and business professionals to share their knowledge and expertise to ensure Member Federations have all the resource and help they need to be more effective in their own marketing programmes and to maximise revenue from the domestic markets at area and National Federation levels.
In addition we will be actively engaging with experts to share knowledge and help develop new commercial revenues which will also benefit National Federations.
This is a crucial time for athletics, and the next President has a big job to do. Out of respect for our Federation and all of its Member Federations I pledge to be a totally committed full time President, clearing my agenda of all matters not relating to the future of our sport. This is a demanding role which requires absolute engagement, and I promise to give my full attention and every last drop of energy to the role.
But the fact is that the job cannot be done from the top down; the future of athletics is in the hands of all member National Federations and not only the hands of the President.
My pledge is to be a wholly committed full-time President working in constant collaboration with the National Federations which are the heartbeat of our sport. I have a clear vision for the future of our sport in which athletics re-engages with young people and becomes even more powerful and attractive global sport. It is a future in which a new generation of stars enthralls spectators in packed stadiums, and millions more around the world on television, and which attracts the world’s biggest and best companies as sponsors.
My motivation for becoming IAAF President is to make that vision a reality!
My thanks to you for the coverage given by you and your colleagues to our wonderful sport and I look forward to meeting with you in the future.
With kind regards,