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World Sailing's Annual Conference wraps up in Bermuda

by Daniel Smith, World Sailing 3 Nov 2019 13:05 PST 26 October - 3 November 2019
World Sailing's Annual Conference © World Sailing

World Sailing's Annual General Meeting concluded the 2019 Annual Conference on Sunday 3 November in Bermuda.

The ninth and final day of the Conference saw the ratification of the Council decisions made on Friday and Saturday, confirmation of the Election Committee for the 2020 General Assembly and a decision made on World Sailing's governance.

Watch a full feed from the day

Governance

Ahead of the 2019 Annual Conference, World Sailing published a Revised Proposal to Reform its Governance titled, "Refreshing the Foundations for Our Future".

The Proposal had received input from World Sailing's Member National Authorities and other stakeholders with a draft Constitution and draft Regulations published.

More information following the publication of the Revised Proposal is available here.

The Proposal was put to World Sailing's Members for approval. In order for it to pass, a majority of 75% was required. 38 members voted in favour with 21 against. This resulted in 64.4% in favour so it was not passed.

Following the vote, the World Sailing Board of Directors announced it had reflected on the comments made at the meeting and would allow a period for further feedback on the Proposal. After this, the Board will call an Extraordinary General Meeting no later than May 2020 in order to consider the Proposal along with any appropriate revisions.

Ratification of the World Sailing Council decisions; iFoil for Paris 2024

Members at the AGM approved the amendments to the Regulations and Constitution as approved at the meeting of World Sailing's Council, the main decision making body, on Friday 1 and Saturday 2 November.

However, a separate debate was held around the Men's and Women's Windsurfer Equipment for Paris 2024. Ahead of the AGM, the Chinese Yachting Association and the Israel Sailing Association moved an amendment to change the Council's decision to select the iFoil and instead replace it with the RS:X as the Windsurfer Equipment.

A 50% majority was required for the vote but delegates voted to reject the amendment. 13 voted in favour, 37 against and there was one abstention.

This now confirms the list of Events and Equipment for Paris 2024 as:

Men's Windsurfer - iFoil
Women's Windsurfer -iFoil
Men's One Person Dinghy - Laser
Women's One Person Dinghy - Laser Radial
Women's Skiff - 49erFX
Men's Skiff - 49er
Mixed Kite - Formula Kite
Mixed Two Person Dinghy - 470
Mixed Two Person Multihull - Nacra 17
Mixed Two Person Keelboat Offshore - TBC*

*The criteria for suitable Equipment for the Mixed Offshore qualification events will be published no later than 31 December 2020. At the same time, an additional set of criteria will be published for the Paris 2024 Olympic Games Equipment. The recommendation also stated that the Equipment for Paris 2024 will be selected no later than 31 December 2023.

Election Committee

In 2020, World Sailing's General Assembly will see the election of the President and Board of Directors for 2021-2024.

Members approved the Board recommendation for the Election Committee of Phil Cotton (GBR), David Kellett (AUS) and Melanie Willmore (CAN).

Cotton has been Chair of the Audit Committee since 2017 and he will act as the Chair of the Election Committee. Kellett was a member of the Election Committee in 2016, and was an ISAF Vice President from 1998 to 2008, and Treasurer from 2008 to 2012.

Melanie Willmore was the People, Governance & Operations Director at the International Hockey Federation (FIH) from 2010 to 2018, overseeing the FIH elections procedures as Secretary of the Governance Panel and the Elections Oversight Panel, and overseeing governmental work for the FIH Executive Board and Foundation Board.

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