POSTED: January 28th 2016

Olympics: IOC Executive Board member Anita DeFrantz to advise LA2024 on legacy

IOC Executive Board member Anita DeFrantz / LA 2024
IOC Executive Board member Anita DeFrantz / LA 2024

LAURA WALDEN (USA) / Sports Features Communications

(SFC) The Los Angeles 2024 bid today named IOC Executive Board member and Olympian Anita DeFrantz as Senior Advisor for Legacy. DeFrantz has been the keeper of the legacy for the 1984 Los Angeles Olympics as the head of the LA84 Foundation, a position that she has held since the establishment of the organization which received 40% of the 1984 Games' proceeds. She recently retired from that position.

The LA84 Foundation has created a concrete legacy by giving back over $225 million to the local community and more than 3 million boys and girls. More than 1,100 youth sports organizations throughout Southern California have benefited from the endowment. A significant achievement.

Last November, new grants totaling $771,758 were announced by the Foundation, which will fund 30 athletic programs and serve 24,000 children in LA and the wider Southern California area.

Her mission with the bid will be how to compound on this excellent model for the next generation of Angelenos long after 2024.

"In my 28 years as president of the LA84 Foundation, we served youth through sports and enhanced the knowledge of sport in society," said DeFrantz.

"From our operation of the largest sports research library in North America to our recent unveiling of the first phase of a major renovation to the city's largest soccer facility, the 26-acre Ferraro Fields soccer complex at Griffith Park, the LA84 Foundation's work is living proof of the type of Olympic legacy that is possible for a city. I am excited to have the chance to build a new Olympic legacy for Los Angeles with the LA 2024 Candidature Committee."

Tonight Mayor Eric Garcetti and other civic and community leaders will honor DeFrantz at a reception celebrating her leadership and achievements as the president of the LA84 Foundation.

LA 2024 Chairman Casey Wasserman said, "Anita has already been an important member of our team, and we are proud to welcome her to this new critical role.

"Thanks to Anita's leadership, the LA 1984 Games set a new standard for putting Olympic Legacy into action, and our team will benefit tremendously from her expertise and years of experience serving our city and the Olympic Movement.

"Her dedication to the values of the Olympic Movement have and will continue to serve as an inspiration to us all as we work to bring the Games back to the United States for the first time in 28 years.

"The IOC's visionary Olympic Agenda 2020 recommendations make clear that the Olympic Games need to provide athletes with the optimal Games experience while leaving a long-term legacy that benefits a city. Given these recommendations, we are convinced that Los Angeles could be the perfect partner for the Olympic Movement at this time."

Champion for Athletes

Olympian DeFrantz is a bronze medal rower from the Montreal 1976 Games and she went on to serve as Vice-President of the 1984 Los Angeles Olympic Organizing Committee and was then elected to the IOC in 1986. The next year she took the lead of the LA84 Foundation and has guided the organization for 28 years. After she graduated law school she dedicated her efforts to training for the Moscow 1980 Olympics which then President Carter decided to boycott. She made headlines when she publicly protested and then led an effort to file a lawsuit against the US Olympic Committee in hopes of forcing them to send a team to Moscow but they lost. However DeFrantz was awarded the Olympic Order for her efforts.

In 1997 she became the first woman IOC Vice-President taking the powerful head of the IOC Medical Commission Prince de Merode's place, when his term ended. He supported her to take his place and quietly lobbied for her behind the scenes to win vice-president.

She also is an advocate for women's sports and served as Chair of the Women and Sport Commission (1995-2014) then Honorary Member (2014-2015) and was also President of the Southern California Olympian Society.

**LAURA WALDEN has over twenty-five years of experience in the Olympic Movement, formerly at the European Olympic Committees with SportEurope under former IOC President Dr. Jacques Rogge and IOC Member Mario Pescante. She worked with the Rome 2004 and Turin 2006 Olympic bids and also managed PR & media for Dr. Jacques Rogge during his campaign for the presidency.

Keywords · Olympics · Anita DeFrantz · Los Angeles 2024

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