Olympic Games Gold medallists Susie O’Neill and Kim Brennan have been announced as Deputy Chefs de Mission for the Australian Olympic Team to compete at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games.
The pair join Olympic fencer Evelyn Halls in the key roles, rounding out Chef de Mission Ian Chesterman’s leadership team for the Games.
Additionally, New South Wales Institute of Sport CEO Kevin Thompson has been appointed as Head of Performance.
The appointments were confirmed at the AOC Executive Meeting in Sydney today.
AOC President John Coates AC says he’s pleased Chef de Mission Ian Chesterman has such solid support behind him.
“Each of these Olympians has special qualities to contribute to the Team environment and each will bring their own experience and perspective. They will prove a very important resource for Ian,” Coates said.
Tokyo 2020 Chef de Mission Ian Chesterman says the Deputy roles are critical in ensuring that the athletes’ needs come first.
“We are focused on giving our athletes the very best opportunity to perform at their best. Our three Deputies totally understand the environment of Olympic competition, and will be a great support to our athletes and coaches in the team.
“It is very exciting to have such a high calibre group together. Each brings something different but each has a fantastic work ethic and great empathy for what’s important to athletes,” Chesterman said.
Winner of eight Olympic medals, Susie O’Neill AM says it’s a privilege to again be part of the wonderful energy of an Olympic team.
“I’m hoping that I can provide that reassurance to the younger athletes. When they see that I am just an everyday person, they can believe in themselves and that anything is possible,” O’Neill said.
Rio single scull Gold medallist Kim Brennan AM says to be contributing to the Team effort so soon after retirement is exciting.
“Every Olympian wants to keep contributing in one way or another. We have that bond. To be stepping into this role gives me the chance to make a different type of contribution,” Brennan said.
Olympic fencer from the Sydney and Athens Games Evelyn Halls says it’s an honour to be able to contribute in Tokyo.
“Undertaking the role of Chef de Mission for our Youth Olympic Team in Buenos Aires last year gave me a great appreciation of the difference you can make for our young athletes. To see that young team meld as a unit and really perform to their best was very satisfying,” Halls said.
Kevin Thompson says he’s very excited and privileged to be involved with the Australian Team for the Tokyo Olympics.
“Leading a team to deliver HQ performance support services whilst working closely with Dr David Hughes and his medical team is a great opportunity. I look forward to the challenge of the Games and working through the requirements of each sport to support them in optimising athlete performances,” Thompson said.