POSTED: March 14th 2016

Olympics: Italian champion fencer Diana Bianchedi talks about her dedication for the Rome 2024 bid

General Director Diana Bianchedi (left) and Luca Cordero di Montezemolo Chairman of Rome 2024 © Getty Images
General Director Diana Bianchedi (left) and Luca Cordero di Montezemolo Chairman of Rome 2024 © Getty Images

Piazza del Popolo in the heart of downtown Rome © Rome 2024
Piazza del Popolo in the heart of downtown Rome © Rome 2024

MARISSA FLANDERS (USA) / Sports Features Communications

Today, Italian national daily newspaper, La Repubblica spoke with the General Director of the Rome 2024 Bid Committee, Diana Bianchedi.

The Italian fencer won gold medals in women's foil during the 1992 and 2000 Summer Olympic Games. Rome 2024 named her to the position of General Director in November of last year.

Bianchedi commented on the appointment, "I did not expect this position, but when Malagò and Montezemolo called me, I had absolutely no hesitation in answering. Before the Bid Committee, I directed a rehabilitation center called Isokitenic, which I left. Sport has taught me to evaluate priorities, as a child I was different."

She touched on her role as a women in the sporting world, "To the IOC a position like mine is natural (a female leader), there is no embarrassment. In the office, half of the staff is female. I don't make my choices based on gender, but on skills, I would like the environment to give more consideration to women's needs."

Bianchedi also talked about how her years of experience as an athlete and in the sporting world.

She spoke about her time as an athlete stating, "I attended six Olympic villages, I know where the cafeteria is, I know that it takes hours for security checks. Do you know how many times during the fencing competitions I got angry because the equipment that marks the hits was not facing the audience?  Society and sport must speak, understand each other, and communicate."

In addition, Bianchedi touched on the work that she has started saying, "Today begins the census on the sports school facilities in order to know which ones are available for training. For technical expertise, I called twenty people between architects and engineers. I asked the 15 presidents of Rome's municipalities to put on the table three urgent and feasible matters needed by their districts: a playground, the remake of flower beds for example. I found out that there are swings for the disabled in parks, I immediately called Luca Pancalli, President of the Paralympic Committee."

Bianchedi spoke about the legacy that Rome Olympics have left behind, "I come from Milan, I came to Rome to train because I was looking forward to the Olympic qualification, I had to stay there a month, I'm still here.  Every day I cross a part of the city and the streets built for Rome 1960, a sign that the Olympics leave a tangible legacy, like for Turin 2006."

She concluded the interview saying, "I encourage women, and I ask Italy to believe in the beauty of the Games. Evaluate our project and the work behind it. Sport has taught me to handle challenges and give credit."

Rome is bidding against Budapest, Paris and Los Angeles to host the 2024 Summer Olympics and the IOC will make their final choice in September 2017 at the session in Lima, Peru.

** 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 · Rome 2024 · Olympic bidding · Diana Bianchedi · Rome

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.