Commonwealth Games Australia has held its Annual General Meeting today. The meeting was held online, due to the continued impact of COVID-19, but highlighted an action-packed twelve months of sport ahead.
For the second time in its 91-year existence, Commonwealth Games Australia conducted its Annual General Meeting virtually, as the Australian community continues its recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic.
The 2021 AGM also signified the organisation’s shift to a calendar year financial period to provide greater financial clarity and planning heading towards the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games and beyond. Therefore with just six-months since the 2020 AGM in November last year, the reporting period was a unique six-months from July to December 2020, as CGA enters a full 12 month reporting period in 2021.
The 2020 Commonwealth Games Australia Annual Report, which spans 1 July – 31 December 2020, can be read here:
CGA ANNUAL REPORT 2020 (JULY - DECEMBER)
To read the full CGA Annual Report for 2020 (1 July - 31 December 2020) click the download button
With less than 435 days to go until the Birmingham Games, the meeting featured and update from Australian Team Chef de Mission Petria Thomas OAM, confirmed three new Commonwealth Games Australia Life Members – Dr. Grace Bryant OAM, Marjorie Nelson-Jackson AC CVO MBE and Sue Taylor AM – along with addresses from CGA President Ben Houston and CEO Craig Phillips.
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Commonwealth Games Australia President Ben Houston, in presenting the 2020 Annual Report, spanning 1 July – 31 December 2020, said the year of 2020 concluded in a way no one could have foreshadowed at the beginning of the year.
Yet acknowledged with the Tokyo Olympics and Paralympics now less than 100 days away, the next twelve months would be a bumper year of sport for those who enjoy cheering for the ‘green and gold’.
“The postponement of Tokyo 2020 to Tokyo 2021 delivered many challenges for our sport partners, but towards the end of 2020, Australia’s fortunate isolation allowed many domestic sporting events to resume with some promising results from our nation’s elite sportspeople,” Houston said.
“Now with less than 100 days until both the Tokyo Olympics and Paralympics, we eagerly look forward to cheering on the green and gold in Japan, kicking off what our Birmingham 2022 Chef de Mission Petria Thomas has described as, a ‘bumper year of green and gold sport’ in 2021-22.”
Houston congratulated and thanked the three new Life Members for their contributions and service to the Commonwealth Sport Movement and welcomed them as the 23rd, 24th and 25th members of the prestigious club.
“Congratulations to Dr. Grace Bryant, Marjorie Jackson-Nelson and Sue Taylor, without their contributions and service to the Commonwealth Sport Movement, Commonwealth Games Australia would not be where we are today,” Houston said.
“We look forward to a period in the future when we can hold another reception to properly congratulate and celebrate the latest CGA Life Members, but on behalf of CGA, our sport partners and all those in CGA family, we thank you all and congratulate you all on being bestowed with this honour as a tribute to your service.”
Houston also expressed his thanks to the CEO’s of the three peak Games bodies and their staff, led by Matt Carroll at the Australian Olympic Committee, Lynne Anderson at Paralympics Australia and CGA CEO Craig Phillips for their work on a range of programs, including submissions to the Federal government and the Australian Institute of Sport (AIS) and welcomed the recent Federal government budget announcement of securing high performance funding through until 2024.
“Having high performance sport funding secured through 2024 will provide the AIS will be able to give sports greater clarity over their long-term funding in preparations for the Paris 2024 Games,” Houston said.
“There is a unique opportunity over the next twelve months, with the Olympics and Paralympics followed by the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games and this calendar is ensuring the collective resources of the AIS, sports and the National Institute Network are working together to ensure the Commonwealth Games remains a central plank in our nation’s performance pathway.”
The funding certainty also assists in building towards the 2026 and 2030 Commonwealth Games, which will be crucial events on the road to a possible return of the Olympic Games to Australia in Brisbane in 2032.
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Houston also thanked the Presidents, CEOs and staff of member sports and also extended thanks to the Commonwealth Games Australia Board, the CEO and staff for their passion and commitment to progressing Commonwealth sport in Australia.
Australian Team Chef de Mission Petria Thomas OAM provided an update of how preparations for the Birmingham Games were coming along, acknowledging that while the team still faces unknowns challenges they will show the same resilience and resolve as the Australian team members to overcome them and provide the best Games possible for the green and gold.
“Since the last AGM we have added Commonwealth Games silver medallist and Paralympics medallist Katrina Webb OAM to our team executive, she has brought her vast experience and knowhow to the team which has assisted us in planning for the Birmingham Games,” Thomas said.
“With less than 450 days to go, we are on track to delivering a great Games for our team, a Games that will be like no other before.”
Chief Executive Officer Craig Phillips highlighted the difficulties of 2020, the strong working relationship of the peak body alliance with the Australian Olympic Committee and Paralympics Australia, going on to applaud the funding certainty for Australia’s high performance sport.
“CGA welcomes the continued commitment to Commonwealth Games sports and athletes,” Phillips said.
“The continuation of Australia’s high-performance strategy is crucial to retaining our status as the Commonwealth’s No. 1, a challenging task as we take on England on home soil in Birmingham.
“And of course, Commonwealth Games Australia is doing its part, committing $13m to our sports and athletes, including $2m in direct athlete support via our recently announced BreakThrough2022 program.”
Phillips also congratulated Dr. Peter Harcourt on being appointed to the Commonwealth Games Federation (CGF) Medical Adviser and Chair of its Anti-Doping and Medical Commission, Dr. Harcourt has been the Australian Team Medical Director at the Delhi 2010 Commonwealth Games and a team doctor at the Manchester 2002 Games.
Phillips also acknowledged the contribution of David Grevemberg to the Commonwealth Sport Movement globally, after he stepped down as Chief Executive Officer of the CGF in late 2020.
Commonwealth Games Australia also honoured the memory of former team members and members of the Commonwealth Games Australia family who passed away in the period since the last Annual General Meeting in November 2020.