USOC Chief Nominated for IOC Post
Jul. 28, 2000
LAUSANNE, Switzerland (AP) _ U.S. Olympic Committee president Bill Hybl was among 14 candidates put forward Friday for election to the International Olympic Committee.
From a list of 48 candidates, the IOC executive board nominated eight leaders of national Olympic committees and six heads of international sports federations.
In what should be a formality, the 14 names will be submitted to a vote by the full IOC at its Sept. 11-13 general session in Sydney, Australia. A simple majority is sufficient for approval.
The IOC, which currently has 113 members, is adding new delegates as part of reforms instituted after the bribery scandal involving Salt Lake City's successful bid for the 2002 Games.
New members will get eight-year terms. They lose their IOC seats if they reach the new age limit of 70 or if their term as sports administrator ends during that time.
Kip Keino, the former Kenyan distance running great who is president of his national Olympic committee, was also nominated. Keino won Olympic gold in the 1,500 meters at the 1968 Mexico Games and the 3,000-meter steeplechase at the 1972 Munich Olympics.
The other nominees from national Olympic committees are: Alfredo Goyeneche (Spain), Seyed Mostafa Hashemi Taba (Iran), Carlos Nuzman (Brazil), Lassana Palenfo (Ivory Coast), Henri Serandour (France), and Yu Zaiqing (China).
Nominated from sports federations were: Ruben Acosta, Mexico, volleyball; Tamas Ajan, Hungary, weightlifting; Bruno Grandi, Italy, gymnastics; Paul Henderson, Canada, sailing; and Gian Franco Kasper, Switzerland, skiing. Robert Steadward of Canada, the president of the International Paralympic Committee, was also nominated.
There were no women among the 48 candidates. The executive board expressed its disappointment and assigned vice president Anita DeFrantz to look into why there were no female nominees. The IOC currently has 13 female members.
The United States already has three IOC members _ DeFrantz, James Easton and former volleyball player Bob Ctvrtlik.
Hybl, 58, had been nominated by the Colorado Springs, Colo.-based USOC, even though he is due to step down as USOC president in November, and, under the new rules, his IOC membership would expire.
IOC president Juan Antonio Samaranch, however, said the USOC can propose that Hybl stay on as an IOC member if he continues to hold a senior position within the USOC.
Hybl, who was in Lausanne on Thursday, was traveling Friday and was not available for comment.
``President Samaranch has long said that the USOC is the most important Olympic committee in the world,'' DeFrantz said. ``Now that we have the opportunity to nominate Olympic committee presidents, of course the president of the USOC should be nominated. The president at this moment is Bill Hybl.''
USOC spokesman Mike Moran said: ``The USOC is thrilled with Bill's nomination because it's a bonus for American athletes, for the USOC and for our sports governing bodies.
``He played a huge role in meeting the challenges of the bid city scandal and demonstrated clear thinking and aggressive action in that regard. Bill's quick action in naming George Mitchell to head up the investigation of the USOC's role gave the organization tremendous credibility and change.''
Another American, Don Porter, president of the international softball federation, was turned down as an IOC candidate because he is 70.
``I'm disappointed,'' Porter said by telephone from Oklahoma City, Okla. ``I figured I've got such experience that the age really shouldn't make a difference.''
Porter welcomed Hybl's nomination, saying, ``It's important the U.S. has as much representation as possible. Unfortunately, we couldn't have more.''
Also turned down was John Coates, the high-profile president of the Australian Olympic Committee and a key figure in the upcoming Sydney Games.
``We thought it is better to wait until after the games,'' Samaranch said. ``I am sure Mr. Coates will be in the list to be elected in Moscow'' at the IOC session in July 2001.
If Friday's nominations go through at the September session, Canada, Switzerland and Italy will each have five IOC members. The United States will have four.
Eight athletes will be elected by their peers to the IOC in September in Sydney.