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SBD Global/January 8, 2014/Finance

UK Athletics CEO's $154,000 Bonus Draws Criticism From British Athletes

Niels de Vos's $154,000 bonus has drawn criticism within athletics.
UK Athletics CEO Niels de Vos "has been accused of sending the wrong message to the country’s volunteer coaches" after "he received" a 55% pay increase during the Olympic year, according to Simon Hart of the London TELEGRAPH. UK Athletics’ annual accounts revealed that the salary for De Vos, who has been CEO of the governing body since '07, increased from £164,326 to £254,994 for the '12-13 tax year. With "pension contributions included" it represents a rise of £93,788 ($154,000). UK Athletics "refused to comment" on De Vos’s pay deal, though it was "due to a one-off bonus and that he will receive a smaller salary in the present tax year." That "will be of scant comfort" to those coaches who give their services for free and to the former UK Athletics employees who lost their jobs at the end of '12, including sprint coaches Tony Lester and Michael Afilaka and veteran endurance coach George Gandy (TELEGRAPH, 1/6). The BBC reported javelin thrower Goldie Sayers has questioned the bonus. Sayers tweeted, "How can Neils de Vos award himself a pay rise for 2012/13 whilst we are losing voluntary coaches every year due to lack of funds?" Former heptathlete Kelly Sotherton, who won Olympic Bronze in '04, responded to Sayers' tweet by describing the news as a "joke." Middle distance runner Helen Clitheroe also replied, tweeting, "unreal," while hammer thrower Sarah Holt described the news as "unbelievable" on her Twitter account (BBC, 1/7). 
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