PESHAWAR, Nov 11 (APP): The New Zealand Olympic Committee (NZOC) made history Wednesday at the 2015 IOC Women in Sport Awards ceremony, when it became the first National Olympic Committee (NOC) to be named World Winner.
During the ceremony at The Olympic Museum in Lausanne, Switzerland, the NZOC took home the World Winner trophy for its long-standing efforts promoting women in sport that have resulted in strong female representation on its Board, within its senior management and on its Olympic teams.
The NZOC has long been at the forefront of championing change to ensure that women have a prominent role in sport, on and off the field of play. Particular attention has been paid to increasing the number of women representing New Zealand at the Olympic Games and in decision-making and leadership positions, not only within the NOC, but also in other sports organizations in the country.
In Lausanne to receive the trophy, Kereyn Smith, Secretary General of the NZOC, said she was delighted to come from a nation where sport is playing a role in creating gender balance.
She said: “We know that, through sport, women can both build and demonstrate the same qualities that also make great leaders – we have been working hard to strengthen and promote this link.” Smith added: “We believe gender balance leads to better decision-making, better organizations and ultimately a better society.”
Cathy Freeman, one of Australia’s most successful and admired Olympic champions, was named the continental winner for Oceania for her outstanding work making a difference to young Australians through the Cathy Freeman Foundation (CFF) and supporting other community and charitable activities.
IOC Women in Sport Commission Chair Lydia Nsekera congratulated the winners for their achievements and said: “We have winners from all continents but they all have something in common. They all want to make the world a better place through sports. On and off the field of play they are working together to make sure that through sports women can play an important role. We still have a long road to travel. But working together we will get there.”