Thomas Bach

Thomas Bach elected as ninth IOC president

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German Thomas Bach was voted the new president of the International Olympic Committee on Tuesday.

Bach, 59, a 1976 Olympic champion for West Germany in team foil fencing, succeeds Jacques Rogge, whose term limit is up after an initial eight-year term followed by a second four-year term.

“I know of the great responsibility of an IOC president,” Bach said. “This makes me humble. I want to lead the IOC according to my motto, ‘Unity and Diversity.'”

Bach, elected to an eight-year term with the possibility of a four-year renewal, is the ninth president in the 119-year history of the IOC. He has been an IOC member since 1991, the IOC vice president and the head of the German Olympic Committee.

Bach won a majority of votes over six total candidates. It took two rounds of secret-ballot voting.

“I will do my very best to balance well all the different interests of the stakeholders of the Olympic movement,” Bach, a lawyer, said. “You should know that my door, my ears and my heart are always open.”

He beat five other candidates — Sergey Bubka (Ukraine), Richard Carrion (Puerto Rico), C.K. Wu (Taiwan), Ng Ser Miang (Singapore) and Denis Oswald (Switzerland). The voting would eliminate one candidate per round until somebody received more than 50 percent of the total vote.

The final vote totals in the second round:
Bach: 49
Carrion: 29
Ng: 6
Oswald: 5
Bubka: 4

Wu was eliminated in the first round after a tiebreaker runoff vote with Ng.

Dmitry Chernyshenko, president of the Sochi 2014 Olympic Organizing Committee, captured video of the announcement and posted it shortly after:

Thomas Bach

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Here is the full list of IOC presidents:
Demetrius Vikelas, Greece (1894-96)
Pierre de Coubertin, France (1896-1925)
Henri de Baillet-Latour, Belgium (1925-42)
J. Sigfrid Edstrom, Sweden (1946-52)
Avery Brundage, U.S. (1952-72)
Lord Killanin, Ireland (1972-80)
Juan Antonio Samaranch, Spain (1980-2001)
Jacques Rogge, Belgium (2001-13)
Thomas Bach, Germany (2013-)

USOC head elected as IOC member

Caitlyn Jenner: Olympic decathlon title one half of ‘ultimate double’

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Caitlyn Jenner says she has ultimate double — winning the 1976 Olympic decathlon and 2015 Glamour “Woman of the Year.”

Jenner sat down with Seth Meyers for an interview during a media tour for her memoir, “The Secrets of My Life,” which was released Wednesday.

She briefly mentioned her Olympic experience, winning the Montreal 1976 decathlon.

Jenner related it to her current work within the transgender community, one that she said is marginalized and misunderstood with high murder and suicide rates.

“What I’m doing today is mort important than winning the Games more than 40 years ago,” Jenner said.

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Syria-born Olympian takes advocacy role at U.N. refugee agency

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GENEVA (AP) — The U.N. refugee agency has chosen as a goodwill ambassador a Syrian teenage girl who helped save a boat carrying fellow refugees and later became an Olympic swimmer.

Yusra Mardini was appointed as UNHCR Goodwill Ambassador on Thursday, joining other notables like actress Cate Blanchett and author Khaled Hosseini in the unpaid advocacy role.

UNHCR chief Filippo Grandi said Mardini “represents the hopes, the fears and the incredible potential of the more than 10 million young refugees around the globe.”

Mardini and her sister Sarah jumped overboard and swam for hours alongside their overloaded boat to reach Greece from Turkey in 2015.

She swam on the first Refugee Olympic team in Rio last year and has discussed refugees’ challenges with leaders like Pope Francis and President Barack Obama.

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