President's Message - November 2009

By Craig Crowley

First and foremost I wish to express my sincere thanks to my predecessor, Dr. Donalda K. Ammons for her time and commitment throughout her six years as ICSD President. There is absolutely no doubt that with 35 years of experience in Deaf Sport already under her belt she has already left a lasting legacy in Deaf Sports globally. On behalf of ICSD I wish her well in her future endeavours.

It is certainly a great honour to present my first Presidential Report since my election at Taipei ICSD Congress!

What can I say about the recent Taipei Summer Deaflympics?! It was a truly magnificent spectacle with over 4,000 athletes and officials taking part and over 50 world records broken - I was vastly impressed with the HIGH standards of our Deaf athletes! Congratulations to all who took part in this wonderful Taipei Summer Deaflympics - our thanks to the Organising Committee!

It is with genuine sadness that we record the most recent sudden passing of two of the most influential Deaf sport leaders in Kuo-tung CHOU and Dr. Lawrence 'Larry' Fleischer. In a symbolic way Kuo-tung CHOU's legacy lives on with the huge success of the Taipei Summer Deaflympics in which he was one of the torch bearers. Larry was greatly respected in his home country for his pioneering achievements in both deaf education and deaf sport and they both will be sadly missed.

We have had positive feedback from the IOC Congress in Denmark, this means ICSD and staff now need to look closely at the approved IOC recommendations and the impact those recommendations have on ICSD and look at building those relevant recommendations into Deaf Sport Reform and our Members. More information will be communicated with our Members as soon as possible.

We hope to produce our first draft three year strategic plan at the ICSD Executive Committee in the New Year. We shall also be working hard to establish an ICSD Anti-Doping Code in compliance with the general principles of WADA including its international standards.

Therefore, in the next four years we must start building a better and robust future for Deaf Sport. I would really appreciate the help of the Deaf Sport Federations, so together we can lead or shape up the organisation in the next four years.

We all must put new touches into Deaf Sport Reform first – this work will not be easy – please be aware the challenges we face will have some very tough choices to be made. We cannot afford to look back now; we need to look forward with a sense of higher purpose with the whole ICSD Executive Committee in the driving seat to make it happen.

I quote a famous politician & diplomat who said: "the greatest risk we can take is to try the same old politics with the same old players and expect a different result."

This means that the change we need does not have to come from ICSD – in fact change has to happen because Deaf Sport Federations want new ideas, new leadership, new people and new diplomacy and politics for a new ICSD.

I look forward to debating them with the new Executive Committee, Regional Confederations, Commission members, Technical Directors and ICSD staff over the next twelve months.

Here's to the next four years with an air of enthusiasm and a positive commitment.

Very best wishes,

Craig A. Crowley
President