Sabrina Ibáñez (SUI), Secretary General of the Fédération Equestre Internationale (FEI), has been elected as President of the newly-founded Association of Paralympic Sports Organisations (APSO). The vote took place at the founding General Assembly of the Association in Abu Dhabi (UAE).
The FEI Secretary General was standing for election alongside Maureen Orchard (CAN), former President and now Secretary General of the International Wheelchair Basketball Federation (IWBF), with four votes in favour of Mrs Orchard and 12 votes for Mrs Ibáñez.
Mrs Orchard, who has chaired the working group that was formed following the decision to dissolve the IPC Sports Council at the 2015 IPC General Assembly in Mexico City in order to establish the independent body, was elected to the APSO Board of Directors. Also elected as Board Members were Henk Van Aller, Secretary General of the International Blind Sports Association (IBSA), Tom Dielen, Secretary General of World Archery, and Colin Grahamslaw, Secretary General of the World Curling Federation (WCF).
“I am truly honoured to have been elected as President of the new Association of Para Sports Organisations, which has such an important role to play”, the newly-elected APSO President Sabrina Ibáñez said today. “It is our function as governing bodies to safeguard the rights of our Para-athletes and I am fully committed to guaranteeing a sound governance framework that will protect these athletes and encourage the future growth of Paralympic sport worldwide.”
“I am also delighted with the election of my Board members and am particularly thrilled to have another woman on the board in Maureen Orchard, who has such a wealth of experience and whose role as chair of the working group has led to the creation today of this important organisation.”
A total of 17 International Federations and other sports organisations which govern Para sport independently, not through the International Paralympic Committee, are now members of APSO:
- Badminton World Federation (BWF);
- Boccia International Sports Federation (BISFED);
- Fédération Equestre Internationale (FEI);
- International Blind Sports Association (IBSA) for Football 5-a-side, Goalball and Judo;
- International Canoe Federation* (ICF);
- International Cycling Union (UCI);
- International Rowing Federation (FISA);
- International Table Tennis Federation (ITTF);
- International Tennis Federation (ITF) for Wheelchair Tennis;
- International Triathlon Union (ITU);
- International Wheelchair and Amputee Sport Federation (IWAS) for Wheelchair Fencing;
- International Wheelchair Basketball Federation (IWBF);
- International Wheelchair Rugby Federation (IWRF);
- World Archery (WA);
- World Curling Federation (WCF) for Wheelchair Curling;
- World ParaVolley (WPV) for Sitting Volleyball;
- World Taekwondo (WT).
*The ICF representative was unable to attend the meeting.