June 10, 2002

PORTOROZ, Slovenia (June 8) – U.S. Ski and Snowboard Association President and CEO Bill Marolt (Park City, UT) was elected Saturday as a vice president of the International Ski Federation and a member of the FIS Council. Marolt succeeds retiring American representative Hank Tauber (Park City, UT), who had served in the position the last 14 years.

The FIS is the international federation representing competitive skiing and snowboarding. Marolt will be one of four vice presidents on the 17-member FIS Council, which provides ongoing leadership and direction for the organization.

“It has been a great experience to work in the leadership of the FIS the last 14 years,” said Tauber, a former coach and alpine director of the U.S. Ski Team. “But it’s also a good time for a transition. I’m proud of what we have accomplished in our sport. But as we move forward, it’s good to have even more of the top staff leaders in our national associations, like Bill, taking more of a role in the leadership of the sport.”

Marolt joined a host of other national association leaders who were elected to the FIS Council Friday at a vote of more than 100 nations taking part in the FIS Congress in Portoroz. The FIS Congress, with representation from all ski and snowboard nations of the world, meets only every other year with the FIS Council providing leadership and direction between the Congress meetings.

“I’m excited to step into this new role on behalf of the sport in our country and worldwide,” said Marolt, who listed eradication of doping, progressive modernization of formats for sport, and financial support of elite athletes and national teams as top issues facing the FIS. “Certainly the number one issue facing our sport is doping – we have to be very active in eliminating doping, which is doing tremendous harm to our sport. And we need to be progressive in modernizing our sports’ format – especially in alpine ski racing!”

Tauber served as the U.S. representative to the FIS Council throughout the FIS Congress in Portoroz, with Marolt taking over for the final Council meeting of the week.

Marolt, a 1964 Olympic ski racer and former alpine director of the U.S. Ski Team, returned as president and CEO in 1996 after 12 years as athletic director at the University of Colorado. In his tenure at USSA he has brought a professional planning direction to the organization which has resulted in record athletic funding and results. He will continue his day-to-day leadership of USSA, attending FIS Council meetings and functions five to six times per year.

New Events

The FIS Congress added a big air event to the World Snowboard Championships beginning this winter at the Championships in Murau/Kreischberg, Austria. Big air has already been conducted on the FIS World Cup Snowboard circuit.

Whistler, BC, was named for the FIS snowboard championships in 2005. The Championship site for 2003 will be Kreischberg/Murau, Austria, January 11-19 for snowboard.

FIS Comes To Miami

The FIS Congress will return to the USA in 2004 after a 29-year absence. The FIS Congress affirmed the selection of Miami as the site of its next worldwide meeting in the Spring of 2004. The FIS Congress last was held in the USA in 1975 in San Francisco. Over 1,000 delegates from more than 100 nations take part in the meetings every two years. The decision to select Miami was made by the 17-member FIS Council, together with the federation’s internal FIS Travel Service, last year. It was affirmed and announced to the delegates in Portoroz as they concluded a week of meetings. Dates for the 2004 meeting are pending, but are likely to be late May or early June.