ISU – Kim Jae-youl succeeds Jan Dijkema as president of the international skating federation (ISU). The South Korean received the most votes during the congress of the federation in the Thai city of Phuket.
In advance, the 77-year-old Dijkema had already announced that he did not want to extend his presidency. He had been president of the federation since 2016 and was the third president from the Netherlands after Pim Mulier (1892-1895) and Gerrit van Laer (1937-1945).
The 53-year-old Kim received 77 of the 119 votes, beating the three other candidates. In addition to the South Korean, the American Patricia St. Peter, the Finnish Susanna Rahkamo and the Serbian Slobodan Delic had stood for election.
“I am very surprised by your overwhelming support,” Kim responded in his speech. “I want to be a president for all countries, no matter how big they are and what region they come from. We are a family, together we can grow our sport.”
Skating-ISU elects former Korea Skating Union head as president
Kim is the first ISU head to come from outside Europe since the organization’s founding in 1892. Since 2016, he has been one of the ten members of the ISU Council, the federation’s executive body.
Previously, Kim was chairman of the South Korean Skating Federation (from 2011 to 2016) and was involved in the organizing committee of the 2018 Olympic Games in Pyeongchang.
Four years earlier, he was the head of the South Korean delegation at the 2014 Winter Games in Sochi.