Cross-Country Talk: Kikkan Randall USA
During the recent FIS Council meetings in Oberhofen (SUI), FIS Athlete Commission Chair Kikkan Randall from the USA took a historic seat at the table of the FIS Council meetings. FIS Cross-country caught up with Randall to discuss what this means to have athlete representation at the highest level of FIS and about the upcoming competition season.
FIS: Can you tell us a bit about how it was to sit in on the recent FIS Council meetings? As the Chair of the Athlete Commission it must feel like quite an accomplishment.
KR: It’s been pretty fun over the last few years to discover the different levels of FIS and how the business end of the World Cup works. Ultimately, the FIS Council makes all of the big decisions that effects our various disciplines. So to have an athlete present there is obviously a huge step forward for us. Personally for me it was a really cool experience to just observe and see how decisions are made, learn the process of things, and then be able to insert an athlete’s point of view here and there.
FIS: Can you explain the status that the Athlete Commission currently has with the FIS Council?
KR: We have asked for voting rights with a seat on the Council. In order to do that, it requires a change in the statutes, which cannot happen until the next FIS Congress convenes in 2016. So in the mean time we have been granted “observer” status and then in 2016 we will put forward a proposal to amend the statutes and add an athlete’s position as a voting member of the Council.
FIS: Looking back over the 6 years you have been involved with the FIS Athlete Commission and the past two as the Chair of the commission. Has a seat at the table with the FIS Council been the big goal?
KR: Right away when the Athlete’s Commission was re-formed six years ago we felt that in order to be legitimate and effective we needed to have representation at every level of the International governing body. We took a big lead from the IOC Athlete Commission that does have a representative on their Executive Board. It’s been our goal and we have been steadily working towards that over the past six years. Along the way, it’s been important to gain experience at the various levels before reaching the level of the Council. I think all this experience will serve us well and its great to finally have a seat.
FIS: Looking ahead now to the start of your 15th World Cup season you must be excited to get started?
KR: Wow! Has it really be 15 years already? Yeah, at this time of year it’s always exciting, with butterflies in your stomach and anxious just to see how all the preparation pays off. For me and those of us coming over from North America it is also a bit of a reunion to see the other competitors and I am really looking forward to kicking things off this week in Ruka.
FIS: Thank you for your time. Congratulations on all your achievements with the Athlete Commission and good luck with the coming competition season.
KR: It was my pleasure. Thank you.