Ahead of the elections in Budapest, 14 candidates have been announced for the six available seats on the World Athletics Athletes’ Commission.
All athletes accredited for the World Athletics Championships Budapest 23 will have the right to vote in the elections, which will take place during the championships between 18-23 August in official team venues.
To be eligible for election, athletes must have competed in at least one of the past two editions of the World Athletics Championships, or in the most recent Olympic Games, or be a competitor at this year’s World Athletics Championships.
The six seats available for election in 2023 include the Chair and Deputy Chair positions, which will be voted on by the Athletes’ Commission following the elections and once the membership is finalised.
This year’s Athletes’ Commission elections will introduce a new method of voting. For the first time, voting will be done electronically, on portable voting devices, rather than via paper ballots. This transition to electronic voting is in line with World Athletics’ commitment to sustainability, and will enable a more efficient polling and counting process.
This year World Athletics and official supplier Mondo will also offer relay batons to the first 1500 athletes who vote in the elections.
The 14 candidates, in alphabetical order, are:
Dame Valerie Adams
Rilwan Mohamed Alowonle Jr
Samory Uiki Bandeira Fraga
Diego Garcia Carrera
Great Britain & Northern Ireland
Majd Eddin Ghazal
United States of America
While the date of publishing the list of candidates was initially set to 1 August 2023, the quality and diversity of the athletes who put themselves forward for election means that World Athletics can publish the list today (22). The date of publication also marks the commencement of the campaign period, giving the candidates more time to promote their candidacy.
The importance of athletes to decision-making within World Athletics was recognised and embedded into the World Athletics structures with the governance and integrity reforms approved in December 2016.
Since 2019, the Chairperson and one other member of the Athletes’ Commission – one man and one woman – have been full voting members of the World Athletics Council.
Frederick Marfo is a sportswriter and social worker well known for his advocacy for equal chances and rights for all athletes, especially those with disabilities.