World Sailing confirms appointment of independent panel to oversee 2024 elections

World Sailing, the global governing body for the sport of sailing, has confirmed the appointment of an independent World Sailing Election Panel to oversee the 2024 Presidential and Vice-Presidential elections.  

The panel, comprising four independent legal and regulatory professionals, is tasked with ensuring the election process is transparent, fair and adheres to the guidelines stipulated in the World Sailing Constitution. 

The four appointees were confirmed in November at the 2023 World Sailing Annual Conference in Malaga, Spain.  

  • Margot Foster OLY (Chair) – Former lawyer with extensive governance experience in sport, Chair of World Athletics Election Oversight Panel, Vice President of Motorsport Australia, and 1984 Olympic medallist in rowing for Australia. 
  • Phil Cotton – Auditor with board level experience in public practice, sport, education and the voluntary sector, Chair of the World Sailing Audit Committee 
  • Niels Lindholm – Compliance & Risk Officer for World Athletics, and member of expert panels with the United Nations, the International Paralympic Committee, the World Badminton Federation, and the Fédération Française d’Athlétisme. 
  • Jon Napier – Lawyer and member of the World Athletics Election Oversight Panel, also serving on the legal consultative group for the Association of Summer Olympic International Federations, the World Sailing Governance Reform Working Party, and World Sailing Racing Rules Committee. 

David Graham, World Sailing CEO, said, “The appointment of an independent World Sailing Election Panel is part of World Sailing’s commitment to good governance. This independent panel brings a strong range of expertise and will be in place to ensure robust and transparent processes in the 2024 elections.  

“The four individuals all bring extensive experience in risk and oversight positions within sport and the corporate world, and instil confidence that the highest standards will be maintained.” 

The World Sailing Presidential and Vice-Presidential Elections will be held in-person at the 2024 World Sailing Annual Conference, scheduled for 4-9 November 2024.

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