High Performance Director, Simon Nathan, has today advised Chief Executive Officer, Phil Jones, that he will not be seeking an extension of his contract at Athletics Australia.

Citing personal and professional reasons, Nathan has made the decision to pursue other opportunities after three-and-a-half years in the role.

Jones commended Nathan for his outstanding contribution to Australian athletics, highlighted by his development and implementation of the National Athlete Support Structure and the recent success of the athletics section at both the Rio 2016 Olympic and Paralympic Games.

“Simon has been an outstanding contributor to athletics in Australia during his time as High Performance Director. Although we are saddened by his decision, we wish him every success in the future,” Jones said.

“The National Athlete Support Structure and the outstanding team environment enjoyed by our athletes and their coaches at the recent Rio 2016 Olympic and Paralympic Games highlight the great work that Simon has delivered during his time with us. We are confident that athletics is headed in the right direction on the world stage and this is thanks, in no small part, to the efforts of Simon and his High Performance team.”

Nathan thanked the Australian athletics community for their support during his tenure, and commended the athletes and coaches for their continued efforts to be their best.

“My time as High Performance Director has been both challenging and rewarding, and I am grateful to the athletes and coaches, as well as the broader network of the Australian Institute of Sport and state and territory institute and academies, for their support across the journey,” Nathan said.

“Athletics in Australia is headed in the right direction, with results at Rio 2016 highlighting that we are on an upward trajectory towards the Gold Coast Commonwealth Games in 18-months’ time and Tokyo 2020. Our athletes, with the support of their coaches, are continuing to improve and I am confident of their ongoing development and success into the future.

“My decision to move on has not been taken lightly. I wish all involved with Australian athletics the very best in the years to come and believe that the sport will continue to thrive and succeed in the environment that we have worked hard to establish.”

Athletics Australia will take the opportunity presented to assess the structure of its High Performance Department, with role(s) to replace Nathan to be advertised in the near future.

“Simon’s decision allows us to assess the way we operate and we will advertise new opportunities in the High Performance team once we have assessed what is needed to continue the great work already underway,” Jones said.

Nathan will continue in the role of High Performance Director until the end of October, allowing him to contribute to the development of Athletics Australia’s High Performance Strategy for the next Olympic and Paralympic cycle.


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