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Crawford to lead expert focus on grassroots sport

Crawford to lead expert focus on grassroots sport
September 2, 2008

Federal Minister for Sport, Kate Ellis, has announced the appointment of the independent expert panel that will investigate the reforms required to ensure that Australiaâs sporting system remains prepared for the challenges of the future.

The panel will look at sport at both the elite level and at the grassroots community level, as part of a top-to-bottom examination. It will be chaired by highly-regarded businessman David Crawford, who has previously modernised and driven change at the Australian Football League and Football Federation Australia.

Introducing the work of the panel, Minister Ellis stated "from helping to tackle obesity and preventable disease, through to preparing our elite athletes for the growing challenges of international competition, I am determined to ensure that Australiaâs sporting structure remains ahead of the pack."

Other members of the panel are businessman, Mark Bouris; lawyer and AFL commissioner, Sam Mostyn; Hockey Australia President and former Australian Sports Commission board member, Pam Tye; and business advisor, Colin Carter.

The panel will explore advances in sport science, the new emerging international sporting trends, and the best methods to retain and build upon Australiaâs international standing in sports of all codes. It will take into account the growing challenges to Australia in the global sporting environment in the post-

Beijing environment, note scientific advances and international sporting trends, and make particular recommendations about the best way to retain Australiaâs international standing.

Minister Ellis said there were other important issues for the expert panel to consider beyond elite and international sport, adding "sport plays an important role in health and education, as well as the social and cultural life of communities throughout Australia, and we need to build on this tradition."

The panel will pay particular attention to the most effective manner that sport and physical activity can play a strong role in building a healthier Australia and forming part of the Commonwealth Governmentâs preventative health agenda. They will also assess the structure and capability of the Australian sports system as a whole, to achieve competitive advantage in delivering nationally desirable sport outcomes from social and community level right through to the highest levels of elite performance.

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