The Australian Institute of Sport CEO has announced he will stand down from the role in the new year.
Following a successful Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic campaign, the Australian Institute of Sport (AIS) CEO Peter Conde has announced he will step down from the role.
Conde joined the AIS in 2017, following a period with Australian Sailing which included the London 2012 and Rio 2016 Olympic campaigns.
Australian Sports Commission Chair Josephine Sukkar AM thanked Conde for his work in the evolution of Australia’s high performance sport system.
“Peter has led the AIS brilliantly in his four years at the helm, creating an environment that has allowed our high performance athletes to deliver at their best,” Sukkar said.
“His stewardship of the Australian high performance sporting system culminated in the outstanding performances we saw from our Australian Olympic and Paralympic teams in Tokyo.”
Australia’s Olympic campaign yielded 46 medals, and a record-equalling 17 gold and the Paralympic haul totalled 80 medals, with 21 gold.
Commonwealth Games Australia’s alumni continued to demonstrate the importance of the Commonwealth Games as a pathway to Olympic and Paralympic success.
Alumni members numbered 152 at the Olympics and 28 at the Paralympics.
At the Olympics, 41 Commonwealth Games Australia alumni members captured 28 medals, including over half the gold medal tally with nine podium topping performances.
At the Paralympics, 28 Commonwealth Games Australia alumni won 23 medals.
Commonwealth Games Australia CEO Craig Phillips AM thanked Conde for his leadership of the AIS over the past four years.
“The Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic campaigns were the most difficult and disrupted in Games history and the Australian performances were remarkable. All Australians were invigorated by their efforts,” Phillips said.
“The National High Performance Sport Strategy was adopted under Peter’s stewardship.
“This Strategy, which was endorsed by the Federal, State and Territory Governments in 2019, recognised the importance of Olympic, Paralympic and Commonwealth Games performances.
“Implicit in the Strategy is the support of the national high-performance system for CGA, the AOC and PA’s member sports and their athletes.
“The decision of the Federal Government and Australian Sports Commission to provide certainty of funding for two years during a time of COVID uncertainty was critical to National Sports Organisations. It was welcomed by CGA’s 21 member sports preparing athletes for Birmingham 2022.”
During Conde’s tenure, a range of athlete pathway, wellbeing and support initiatives have also been introduced.
These initiatives include the successful collaboration between Commonwealth Games Australia and the AIS with the Sideline Champions athlete and family support initiative at the Gold Coast Commonwealth Games.
The AIS’s support for the Sideline Champions program demonstrated its understanding that the ‘significant others’ of athletes played a critical role in their performance.
Phillips said the continued collaboration between the AIS and Commonwealth Games Australia was crucial, as is occurring through the delivery Breakthrough2022 athlete support payments which is delivering $2m of Commonwealth Games Australia funding directly to athletes in the lead up to the Birmingham Games.
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“The continued acknowledgement of the importance of Commonwealth Games performances in the National High Performance Sport Strategy is crucial to Australia retaining its status as the Commonwealth’s No. 1 nation, a challenging task as we take on England on home soil in Birmingham.
“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 Australian sport’s performance pathway,” Phillips said.
Looking forward, Phillips said the appointment of a new leadership at the Australian Sports Commission, including the AIS, provides the opportunity to re-set the long-term vision for Australian sport.
Commonwealth Games Australia has a clear long-term vision for how sport can help power Australia’s future which it shares with the Australian Olympic Committee and both organisations’ collective membership of sports.
Commonwealth Games Australia, together with the Australian Olympic Committee, recently released Sport: Powering Australia’s Future (10+10) which provides a strategy to reframe the relationship between sport and government for the benefit of the country.
Phillips said CGA and the AOC were looking forward to continuing discussions with the government on how to bring this to life during the decade long green and gold runway to the Brisbane 2032 Olympics and Paralympics which hopefully will include a 2026 Commonwealth Games in Australia.
By addressing the key barriers preventing the sports industry from delivering substantial outcomes for Australia, the Sport: Powering Australia’s Future (10+10) submission sets out how Sport can tackle Australia’s intergenerational challenges against very similar metrics to the ‘3Ps’ – Population, Participation and Productivity growth – that have framed IGRs for the past 20 years.
This is how sport will deliver Australia’s aspiration of a healthier, smarter, more active population, for all Australians, in all communities.
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Conde said he’ll look back fondly on his time leading the AIS.
“As a team, I believe we have made a substantial difference to the Australian high performance sport system and have created the conditions for us to succeed.
“I am so proud that, even against the backdrop of COVID, we have been part of the biggest performance turnaround in Australian Olympic history.
“I have always talked about the goal of creating sustainable success, so I had to think hard about the timing of my decision.
“Given we are at the start of a new Games cycle, now seems like the best time to minimise disruption to the high performance system.”