FIVB Athletes’ Commission: Making every voice count


Members of the Athletes' Commission at the FIVB headquarters in Lausanne

Lausanne, Switzerland, January 30, 2017 –  All competitive rivalry was put aside on Monday, as some of volleyball and beach volleyball’s greatest came together for a meeting of the FIVB Athletes’ Commission at the organisation's headquarters in Lausanne.

More accustomed to being on opposite sides of the beach volleyball court, Olympic gold medallists Julius Brink (London 2012) of Germany and Brazil’s Emanuel Rego (Athens 2004) sat side-by-side to highlight some important issues affecting the professional lives of volleyball and beach volleyball players around the world.

Joining them at the table were Brazilian volleyball legend and Athens 2004 Olympic champion Giba (Commission president), volleyball Olympic gold medallist (Sydney 2000) Vladimir Grbic of Serbia (Commission Secretary), 2013 beach volleyball world champion Xue Chen of China and Kim Yeon-Koung of Korea.

Members of the Commission – who primarily serve as a link between the players and the FIVB – identified key issues that put athletes’ interests at the heart of the FIVB’s work. The Commission set up working groups to study a range of topics which include:

1. The economic and legal aspects of player transfers and ways in which to educate athletes on these processes;

2. The ways in which athletes can use social media and other communication tools to raise their profile and that of the sport of volleyball more generally;

3. The ways in which the sport can be better communicated to fans.

From left to right: FIVB President Dr. Ary S. Graça F°, Commission president Gilberto "Giba" Amauri de Godoy Filho, Commission secretary Vladimir Grbic.

FIVB President Dr. Ary S. Graça F° encouraged team work and a proactive approach to the advancement of the goals of the Commission. “Now we have created a platform for your voices, we look forward to you contributing with your experience and knowledge to increase the relevance of volleyball in the world and your countries. You are the best ambassadors to convey our values of universality, good governance and innovation around the world," he said.

Officially launched at the Volleyball House during the Rio 2016 Olympic Games, the FIVB Athletes’ Commission is made up of 10 athletes from nine different countries representing both volleyball and beach volleyball. The remaining four members of the Commission include, USA’s three time Olympic beach volleyball gold medallist Kerri Walsh Jennings, Italy’s Eleonora Lo Bianco (2002 volleyball World Champion), European volleyball champion Bartosz Kurek of Poland and Olympian and volleyball world champion Ekaterina Gamova of Russia.

The Commission held its first ever meeting in Buenos Aires, on the sidelines of the 35th World Congress in October 2016.

Following a new format put in place by the FIVB Board of Administration in December, Commissions will now have no more than 10 members in total – a President, Secretary and eight members – to allow for easier dialogue within the Commission and the FIVB Secretariat. The Commissions will lean on experts in the field for ideas and solutions although only members will be allowed to vote on proposals put forward to the Executive Committee.

Quick links:
FIVB Athletes' Commission
FIVB Athletes’ Commission officially launched at Volleyball House

FIVB Commissions and Councils – 2017 meeting schedule
Rules of the Game and Refereeing Commission: Monday, January 23.
Legal Commission: Tuesday, January 24.
Communication Commission: Wednesday, January 25.
Development Commission: Thursday, January 26.
Medical Commission:  Friday, January 27.
Athletes’ Commission: Monday, January 30.
Technical and Coaching Commission: Tuesday, February 14.
Sports Events Council: Thursday-Friday, February 16-17.
Beach Volleyball Commission: Monday-Tuesday, February 20-21.
Finance Commission: Thursday, April 6