POSTED: January 7th 2015

Olympics: Tokyo 2020 looks back on important milestones from 2014 and gears up for a busy 2015

Tokyo rang in the New Year in style / Bigstock
Tokyo rang in the New Year in style / Bigstock

MARISSA FLANDERS / Sports Features Communications

(SFC) The Tokyo Organizing Committee for the 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Summer Games has a busy year ahead. They will reveal the official Games Foundation Plan along with the 2nd Coordination Commission with the International Olympic Committee (IOC) from June 30 to July 2nd.

In addition, they will celebrate two milestones in 2015. Those milestones will be the when there are 2020 days to go to the Olympic Games and 2000 days till the Paralympics.

Even with numerous events to look forward too, Tokyo 2020 has many milestones to look back on from 2014 and take pride in as the 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Summer Games draw closer. looks back at those milestones.

The Tokyo Organizing Committee of the Olympic and Paralympic Games (Tokyo 2020) was Formally Established

Once the Tokyo Organizing Committee of the Olympic and Paralympic Games was formally established, they appointed their President and Chief Executive Officer. Yoshiro Mori was officially named the President along with Toshiro Muto being named the Chief Executive Officer.

Yoshiro Mori was honored by the new appointment stating, "I am honored to have been selected to lead the new organizing committee, and I am fully committed to ensuring that we will deliver a fantastic Games that will showcase the power of sport and further reinforce the Olympic values."

While Toshiro Muto was humbled, “I am delighted and deeply honored to be part of this Olympic journey. I will draw on all my previous experiences and place myself entirely at the service of Tokyo 2020. This new appointment has given me renewed motivation to deliver a wonderful Olympic and Paralympic Games that will inspire new generations, both in Japan and around the world to achieve their own hopes and dreams.

Tokyo 2020 says “Sayonara” to the National Stadium

Tokyo 2020 held a farewell ceremony to commemorate saying "Sayonara" to the National Stadium. Around 40,000 sport fans and members of Japan's sporting community traveled to join in on this special organization.

“Over the past half-century, the National Stadium has truly been a sanctum of Japanese sport. It has hosted numerous unforgettable matches and competitions, and has a special place in the hearts of people all over Japan. I have been actively involved in sport for many, many years, and as the curtain closes on this historic venue, I find myself recalling several of the memorable sporting occasions that have graced the stadium," stated Yoshiro Mori, Tokyo 2020 President.

The new National Stadium that will be built to replace the old stadium will be used for the 2019 Rugby World Cup, athletics, football, rugby competitions for the 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Games, along with the Opening and Closing Ceremonies.

Establishment of the Tokyo 2020 Advisory Meeting

Tokyo 2020 established an Advisory Meeting, which was headed by Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, who will also serve as Chairperson and Supreme Advisor.  The Advisory Meeting is comprised of a total of 170 leading figures coming from major domestic stakeholders. Composed of a Chairperson, three Supreme Advisors, eight Special Advisors and a number of official Advisors, which are 20% female.

Made up of an "All Japan" team of representatives from a broad cross section of Japanese society, they will aid the organizing committee in their efforts to bring forth the nation's passion and excitement for the 2020 Games. In addition to supporting preparations and operations for the 2020 Games from a variety of perspectives.

On the Olympic Day, Tokyo 2020 partnered with more than 552 universities

Tokyo 2020 had the opportunity to partner with over 552 universities, on Olympic Day, from every prefecture in Japan. This gave them a chance to reinforce the Olympic values ahead of the Games. Utilizing the resources of both the universities and Tokyo 2020, it gave a chance to promote Olympic education, keep Olympism at the heart of Japanese society, and raise awareness of the 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Games.

Tokyo University, Waseda University, and Sophia University were among the universities who entered into the partnership agreement.

Olympic hammer throw champion Koji Murofushi appointed as the new Sports Director

Tokyo 2020 announced that Koji Murofushi, an Olympic hammer throw champion, was appointed as the new Sports Director. This was in an effort to actively involve athletes at all levels of preparations.

Koji Murofushi stated, “I am delighted and flattered to have been chosen as the TOKYO 2020 Sports Director...I want to contribute to organizing an athlete-focused Games that will deliver a long-term legacy and benefit for the sporting community in Japan and beyond."

He concluded, “In 2020, we will host the entire world and I want to create an environment at the Tokyo Games that will enable athletes to compete and perform to the peak of their abilities. I am 100% committed to making these Games the best ever.”

Successful first visit for International Olympic Committee (IOC) Coordination Commission to Tokyo

John Coates, IOC Coordination Commission Chair, declared that the Commission was "very pleased" by the initial progress made by Tokyo 2020. They were extremely satisfied that the "best of Japan" had been mobilized to involve everyone in Tokyo 2020 and assist in spreading the message all over the country.

“We are very pleased with Tokyo 2020’s progress under the leadership of President Yoshiro Mori. The Organizing Committee and its government partners have got off to a quick start and are putting in place solid foundations for the next six years of preparations.” said John Coates, IOC Coordination Commission Chair.

He continued, “The close cooperation of all levels of government with Tokyo 2020 was clearly felt by the Commission, particularly following our meeting with Prime Minister Abe and with Governor Masuzoe’s participation in the visit. Their support for the Games, as well as the support of many high-profile Japanese personalities through the Tokyo 2020 Advisory Meeting, are greatly appreciated, and will stand the 2020 Games in good stead. Their commitment underlines that Tokyo 2020 is for all Japan, and is encouraging Japanese everywhere to get behind these Games and see how they can engage in helping Tokyo to welcome the world in 2020."

Tokyo 2020 establishes Athletes and Media Commissions

Tokyo 2020 announced the newly established Athletes and Media Commissions. Each commission will give crucial insights,from their respective domains of expertise and assist in preparations to host a well-organized and successful Games.

The Tokyo 2020 Athletes' Commission will be composed of 21 leading figures of Japan's sporting community, with 10 males and 11 females. Daichi Suzuki, President of the Japan Swimming Federation and Seoul 1988 Olympic Games gold medalist, will chair the commission. Vice Chair will be Junichi Kawai, Barcelona 1992, Atlanta 1996, Sydney 2000, Athens 2014, and Beijing 2008 Paralympic Games medalist.

While, the Tokyo 2020 Media Commission will be led by Hisashi Hieda, Chairman and CEO of Fuji Media Holdings Group. It will be made up of 36 representatives comprised of 22 males and 14 females. One of the members is the President of the Foreign Correspondents' Club of Japan, Lucy Birmingham.

50th Anniversary of the Tokyo 1964 Olympic and Paralympic Games

With the legacy of the Games still palpable in current day Tokyo, as stories of the 1964 Games are cherished by the population to this day. To mark the special 50th anniversary of the Tokyo 1964 Olympic and Paralympic Games, the Tokyo 2020 organizing committee celebrated with numerous events.

Japanese Olympic Committee (JOC) President Tsunekazu Takeda said, "“I am delighted to have this opportunity to reiterate my deepest respect and admiration to all those who contributed to the success of the Tokyo 1964 Games, and of course to all the athletes here today who competed at the Games, performed to the peak of their abilities, and left us with such wonderful memories. It is my earnest wish that today’s celebrations will further contribute to the promotion of the Olympic Movement, to the enhancement of exchanges and mutual understanding between peoples and nations, and to peace throughout the world.”

International Paralympic Committee (IPC) – Tokyo 2020 1st Project Review

The IPC was "extremely encouraged" by the progress made by Tokyo 2020. They received several updates on the planning and progress during their two day visit to Tokyo, Japan.

IPC's Chief Executive Officer Xavier Gonzalez commented, “Although 2014 is the first full year we have been working with the Organizing Committee, we are extremely encouraged with their progress so far."

**MARISSA FLANDERS is a graduate of Saint Leo University with a Bachelor's Degree in Sport Business. She has over four years of writing experience and has a real passion for ice hockey following the Pittsburgh Penguins on her blog:

Keywords · Tokyo 2020 · IOC · JOC · Olympic · Paralympic

For more information contact:
Laura Walden ()

All original materials contained in this section are protected by United States copyright law and may not be reproduced, distributed, transmitted, displayed, published or broadcast without the prior written permission of Sports Features Communications, Inc the owner of that content. It is prohibited to alter or remove any trademark, copyright or other notice from copies of the content.