November 11th 2022:
At yesterday’s 2022 International Surfing Association (ISA) Annual General Meeting, Fernando Aguerre was unanimously re-elected unopposed as President.
Aguerre, who was first elected ISA President in 1994, starts his new term following surfing’s successful debut at last year’s Tokyo Olympic Games, as the federation advances its preparations for the Paris 2024 Olympic Games.
Fernando Aguerre, ISA President, said:
“It’s a great time to be a surfer. I’ve been a surfer all my life and in all types of countries and locations. And this is the best time in the history of mankind to be surfer. There is a huge responsibility on our shoulders as we look toward the future.
“Of course, I captain the ship of Olympic surfing, but nothing I did was alone. From our headquarters team here, to all of you in the national federations, all of you are partly responsible for, and share in this success.
“And now that we have this beautiful and shiny gold medal — our gold medal — our joint gold medal is Olympic surfing, that is our proudest achievement – our collective achievement.
“In this moment I feel a lot of gratitude for being allowed to serve for another four years. There are a few big challenges ahead of us, but I love big challenges, especially for the cause of surfing. I love to paddle harder. When the wave wants to escape, we bring our head down and we paddle harder.
“I’m convinced that we’re going to achieve everything we deserve, but we can only do it together. There is nothing we can’t do. Let’s work together to make a better world through surfing. This is not just a phrase. This is the ISA culture, our collective surfing culture.
“Thank you for allowing me to continue to work in what I love the most.”
The ISA was also pleased to receive a video message from the President of the International Olympic Committee, Thomas Bach.
Thomas Bach, IOC President, said:
“My dear friend, Fernando Aguerre…What an entrance surfing has made on the Olympic stage. The performance of your athletes at the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020 celebrated your sport and your community at its best.
“The surfers brought a new kind of youthful magic to the Olympic Games, a real display of excellence in their sport, but also inspiring moments of respect and sportsmanship that touched the hearts of so many people.
“Your athletes and all of you at the ISA played an essential part in writing Olympic and surfing history in Tokyo. And I’m sure that both the Duke and the Baron…Pierre de Coubertin, are totally stoked about this…”
“So, I say thank you once again for your great contribution to the success of these historic Olympic Games.
“Under the great leadership of your President Fernando Aguerre, you keep riding the waves of progress, modernizing your federation, and developing your sport, whether it is strengthening the role of athletes, supporting clean seas, or driving climate action, stepping up the fight against doping, or promoting inclusion and gender equality and inclusion on and off the surfboards.
“We are happy to have the ISA as our partner. I would to thank all of you at the ISA and the entire surfing community for your contribution to promote sport and its values.”
In addition to the re-election of Aguerre, Barbara Kendall of New Zealand was re-elected ISA Vice President and Jean-Luc Arassus of France was elected for the first time as ISA Vice President. Jakob Færch from Denmark was also elected for the first time as an ISA Regular Executive Committee Member.
The ISA AGM additionally addressed a number of operational and governance matters. These included:
- Approval of four new ISA Member Federations from Egypt, Mauritius, Mozambique and Saudi Arabia, bringing the total ISA Membership now to 113.
- Ratification of the ISA Athletes Commission, who elected four new members recently during the ISA World Surfiing Games in Huntington Beach, as well as approval of Justine Dupont from France as Chair, who will also serve on the ISA Executive Committee.
- The report of the President on Paris 2024 qualification and quotas, opportunities at Los Angeles 2028 for new disciplines and events, and an update on the governance of stand up paddle
- Organizational updates in key governance areas, including gender equality, athlete development and ISA Membership support.