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Volume 26 No. 231
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USOPC Adds More Athlete Reps To BOD As Part Of Series Of Reforms

The USOPC will "increase athlete representation on its governing board as part of a series of reforms," but critics "contend that far more needs to be done to address recent sex abuse scandals of Olympics hopefuls perpetrated by sports doctors, trainers and coaches," according to Christopher Osher of the Colorado Springs GAZETTE. Under the change announced Friday, the number of athletes on the USOPC board will "jump from three to five members, which would mean athletes would make up one third of the board." However, those additions "fell short of what former pentathlete and Olympian Eli Bremer said is needed." He said that many athletes would "prefer to see half of the USOPC board made up of athletes." Meanwhile, USOPC Chair Susanne Lyons "hailed the board restructuring." The USOPC also will have "certification powers" over the NGBs, such as USA Swimming and USA Gymnastics. Bremer said that the athletic community is "hopeful that Congress will pass laws that create more far-reaching changes to the USOPC." He is "backing legislation" sought by U.S. Sen. Cory Gardner (R-Colo.) and U.S. Rep. Diana DeGette (D-Colo.), which would "create a commission with athlete participation to investigate the USOPC and recommend changes" (Colorado Springs GAZETTE, 11/10). U.S. Sens. Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.) and Jerry Moran (R-Kan.) in July "introduced legislation to prevent sexual assaults against athletes by increasing oversight and legal liability for U.S. Olympic and sports officials" (REUTERS, 11/10).