The PNG Olympic Committee Tuesday announced the appointment of Richard Kassman as the chef de mission of Team PNG for the 2015 Pacific Games in Port Moresby.
PNGOC president, Sir John Dawanincura said the appointment of the Chef de Mission was done by the PNG Olympic Committee Executive Board and added the board had every confidence in Kassman.
“There are not many challenges greater in sports administration than to lead your country on home soil in an event of the magnitude of the Pacific Games,” Sir John said.
“The role of the Chef de Mission is a voluntary one and although some may think it is ceremonial, there is a lot more to it, including critical decision making.
“It is very demanding and you need a very good team around you and the decision making of the position is huge and full of consequences and you need a person who has great judgment and very intelligent.”
He said Kassman will be team leader and spokesman for Team PNG athletes prior and during the Games, and will work with the PNGOC to ensure their preparations are on track.
In accepting the appointment, Kassman said: “To be the Chef de Mission for Team PNG at our 2015 Pacific Games is a great honor and indeed privilege, one made extra special because Port Moresby is the host city.
“I am excited and I look forward to working with our 28 sports to prepare Team PNG.
“We have very committed coaches, managers and administrators focused on preparing Papua New Guinea’s best athletes in their respective sports.
“I have served sports in various capacities including as an umpire, coach, and on the executives of clubs, association and national federations, so I see my appointments as 2015 Chef de Mission as reaching the pinnacle of my sports administration career,” Kassman said.
“We are servants of the athletes and this must be central to our leadership approach and my aim and that of the general team management is to make sure that the athletes are well looked after and are comfortable in the team.
“The Games are on our home ground and we need everyone, from the athletes to the general team management focused so that the team can perform to our very best and reap the rewards,” he said.
Kasman was the chef de mission for Team PNG in 2013 to the successful Pacific Mini Games in Wallis & Futuna where PNG topped the medal tally.
PNGOC secretary general Auvita Rapilla said the Team Evaluation Committee (TEC) will go through the process of finalising all the team managers and coaches in April and a general team management should be in place by June.
PORT MORESBY, (POST COURIER)