2024 ISA AC ELECTION

Three (3) athletes will be elected to the ISA Athletes’ Commission to join Afridun Amu (AFG), Leandro Usuna (ARG), Leilani McGonagle (CRC) and Natasha van Greunen (RSA).

ELECTION
The election will take place online between February 21 – 28 during the 2024 ISA World Surfing Games. To be eligible to vote, an athlete must be of the current Olympic discipline (Shortboard) and have competed in ISA World Championships in 2022, 2023, and/or 2024. Each eligible athlete will receive an email with voting link instructions.

The election is subject to the Executive Committee’s right, from time to time, to appoint interim or provisional AC Members from the AC Pool to ensure gender, continental, and/or discipline diversity.

More information regarding the ISA Athletes’ Commission including the Terms of Reference, eligibility requirements for nominees, etc. can be found here.

ATHLETES RUNNING FOR ELECTION:

The 7 nominees, in alphabetical order by last name, are:
  • Alana Nichols

    USA

      My passion for elite sports, coupled with a decade of adaptive surfing experience both nationally and internationally, has driven me to seek a position where I can continue to contribute significantly to the welfare and representation of athletes. Over the past ten years, my dedication to surfing has taken me across the globe, competing at the highest levels and achieving significant milestones. I am proud to say that I am a 4-time World Champion at the International Surf Association’s ParaSurfing Championships.

      My journey has not only been about personal achievement but also about learning the intricacies of what athletes need to thrive and succeed. It is with this understanding and experience that I wish to serve on the Athlete Commission Board. I firmly believe that my background equips me with a unique perspective that can contribute to the Board’s mission of advocating for athletes’ interests. If given the opportunity to serve as a member of the Athlete Commission Board, I would hold the athletes’ interests at the highest regard. My priorities would include ensuring fair play, promoting athletes’ mental and physical well-being, and advocating for equal opportunities for all competitors. My commitment to these principles is unwavering, and I am eager to bring my insights and experiences to the Board to make a meaningful impact.

      It would be an honor to contribute to the Athlete Commission Board’s vital work, and I am excited about the possibility of working alongside esteemed members like yourself to champion the interests and rights of athletes worldwide.

  • Aline Adisaka

    Brazil


      Hi,
      My name is Aline Adisaka, I am from Ubatuba Brazil, which is on the North coast of São Paulo. I started my surfing career as a shortboard surfer competing around Brazil with my brothers, one of whom is still on the QS. I currently compete in the ISA for SUP surfing & racing. Surfing has always been my life ,even before I was born. My dad created a brand in Brazil called: “Hawaiian Dreams”, known as HD. HD is the main sponsor of the first Brazilian world champion: Adriano de Souza. From the first day I could go in the water as a child my family encouraged me to start surfing and has always supported my passion for it.

      When I finished school at age 17 I was debating between following a professional surfing career or to continue onto university. At the time professional surfing in Brazil was almost extinct and SUP was growing a lot. Shortly after, a friend happened to invite me to compete in a SUP racing and surfing contest. It was one of the most challenging things I have ever done and I fell in love with it. Doors started to open for me and I was able to make a career out of it.

      I am currently the Brazilian National Champion, holding 7 National titles (4 times Sup surfing and 3 times Sprint Racing), Gold Medalist at the South American Games, Bronze medalist at the Pan-American Games, and have won the Cooper medal for SUP surfing at the ISA Surfing Games in Denmark.

      As an ambassador of the sport my level of involvement goes far beyond just being a competitor. I am proud to be on the board of the Brazilian Confederation of Surfing as an athlete representative. When the 2021 ISA surfing games were held in El Salvador as the Olympic Qualifiers I was recommended by both the Minister of Tourism in El Salvador and the President of the Brazilian Confederation of surfing to be the local host for team brazil. The following year in 2022 Surfing participated on the Brazilian Olympic Athletes Commission for the first time ever in Olympic history. I was honored to be chosen as the athlete representative for surfing.

      I absolutely love every aspect of being part of the surfing community. From the people we connect with everyday, to traveling and experiencing different cultures. I speak Portuguese, English and Spanish and am used to communicating with many different types of people. These communication skills combined with my passion for helping others helps me create bridges to unify ideas and goals.

      The opportunity to be the surfing community’s voice with the ISA Surfing Games team would be a dream for me and a true match for my skill set. I am a big fan of the ISA crew and already feel like part of the family.

      I strongly believe that my perspective as an athlete and my previous experience as an athlete representative will allow me to make a huge difference as a part of the ISA Athlete Commission and complement the organization. Thank you for your consideration.

  • Ayesha Garvey

    Ireland

      Hey, I’m Ayesha, from Ireland.

      I have participated in five ISA events as a surfer, coach and shadow judge; giving me a unique perspective of the organisation. I feel strongly that athletes voices must be considered in matters that impact them and are pivotal in determining optimal governance of the ISA.

      As a physiotherapist, I am passionate about respecting and fulfilling athletes needs. It is my day job to actively listen, analyse, problem solve, facilitate joint decision making and make realistic action plans. I feel these skills would be invaluable to you as part of the AC.

      In order to elicit the change or development we want, I would encourage more transparent and accessible opportunities for your opinions on current affairs and ideas for progression to be captured and presented to the ISA. Ultimately, I wish to share the ISA’s vision of making a better world through surfing for ourselves and our grass root generations

  • Ignacio Pignataro

    Uruguay

      My name is Ignacio Pignataro, and I am writing to you as a passionate advocate for surfing and its community. I am 29 years old and hail from Uruguay, where I have dedicated myself to both professional surfing and marketing endeavors.

      Throughout my journey, I have strived to bridge gaps between cultures through my love for surfing. Recognized as an Ambassador of Uruguay by the Ministry of Tourism – Uruguay Marca País, I have sought to represent not just my country, but the global surfing community as a whole.

      My academic background in social science and marketing communications (Universidad Católica del Uruguay 2014-2019), coupled with my practical experience in various marketing roles, has equipped me with the skills to effectively communicate and engage with people from diverse backgrounds. From my time as a Digital Media Planner at Wasabi Ad to my recent freelance endeavors, I have consistently demonstrated my commitment to fostering connections and promoting positive change.

      As an athlete, I have not only competed but also taken on roles such as team manager and marketing director, representing surf brands in Uruguay. However, my dedication extends beyond competition; I have organized events and workshops to encourage participation in surfing, particularly among underrepresented groups such as women. Initiatives like the first-ever WSL Lqs in Uruguay and the women’s longboard workshop highlight my commitment to inclusivity and community building within the sport.

      I believe that my multifaceted background, coupled with my unwavering passion for surfing and community engagement, makes me a strong candidate for athlete representation in the International Surfing Association. If given the opportunity, I will strive to amplify the voices of athletes worldwide, promote diversity and inclusivity, and work tirelessly to ensure that the surfing community continues to thrive.

      I kindly ask for your support and the support of fellow athletes in this endeavor. Together, we can make a meaningful difference and shape the future of surfing for generations to come.

      Thank you for considering my nomination.

  • Julian Schweizer

    Uruguay

      Es surfsita/longboarder profesional de 26 años. Hace más de 14 años que su pasión son las olas. Aprendió en las costas de Rocha, Uruguay durante los veranos y vivió 5 años en Costa Rica donde se desarrollo como deportista de élite. Hoy ya tiene una medalla de plata en los Juegos Panamericanos de Lima 2019 y clasificó a la élite del longboard mundial en 2016 siendo estos dos logros históricos para el deporte uruguayo.

      Full bio here:

  • Justine Dupont

    France


      My name is Justine Dupont, from France.
      I am a former Championship Tour surfer, focused now on chasing the biggest swells around the World, what led me to multiple XXL awards.
      I have also represented France in many ISA World Championships, earning individual medals in Surfing, Sup Surfing and Longboarding events.
      I have been at the head of the ISA Athletes’ Commission (AC) since it has been created and I like every part of it.
      The AC is growing, we are united and working hard on many topics.
      I want to help keeping the athletes at the center of the discussion regarding the choices that are taken for the future of our sport.
      The ISA regroups all the disciplines of surfing and it’s important to me that all athletes feel represented.
      Having taken part of ISA events in almost every discipline for so many years, I feel like I understand the needs of the surfers, long boarders, stand up paddlers and para surfers from all around the world.

  • Özlem Ada

    Turkey


      Dear Athletes,
      Who I am:
      My name is Özlem Ada. I am originally from Türkiye and am thrilled to submit my nomination for the upcoming athletes commission election. Since 2021, I have had the honor of representing Türkiye in the women’s shortboard division at the ISA World Surfing Games. Back home, I serve on the Turkish national team and am a board member of the Turkish Surfing Federation, with responsibilities in our organization and collaboration committee. I take pride in the fact that people, especially women surfers, have told me that I inspire them.
      Why I am running:
      I’m running for this position because I believe I can be an effective representative for all countries that dream of participating in the Olympic Games, especially those still developing their surfing communities. These countries often face unique challenges and need more attention to better represent their interests and motivations. My focus is on these underdeveloped surfing nations. Türkiye, for instance, is still in the early stages of developing its surfing scene, but we have big dreams and goals. I know many other countries are in a similar position. Dreams require action to become reality, and I aim to help these nations step by step, hopefully with your support, to turn their dreams into reality. Here’s a glimpse of my journey last year

      Why athletes should vote for me:
      My intention is to help and support countries at the ISA Competition, especially those with fewer team members and those who may need more assistance during a competition. One of my ideas is to have an ambassador who can help guide these teams through the competition. This is just one of the many ideas I have. I believe I am the right candidate for this role because I understand firsthand what it’s like to be an athlete and to be in a situation like the ones I’ve described.
      Thank you for considering my candidacy. I am committed to making a positive impact on our sports community and would be honored to have your support.
      Best, Özlem

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