Cycling Australia appoints longtime cycling backer Gerry Ryan as new president
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Sunday, November 10, 2013

Cycling Australia appoints longtime cycling backer Gerry Ryan as new president

by VeloNation Press at 11:46 PM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling
 
Multi-millionaire has key role with Orica GreenEdge, has been major supporter of Australian events

Cycling AustraliaHaving long been involved in Australian cycling as a financial backer of events such as the Herald Sun Tour, the Santos Tour Down Under and the Bay Classic Series plus, more recently, providing funding and impetus for the founding of the Orica GreenEdge team, Gerry Ryan’s involvement in cycling in the country has become even bigger.

The Jayco Caravans businessman is due to take over as president of Cycling Australia after the federation’s board appointed him to the role over the weekend.

He succeeds previous chief Klaus Mueller, who announced in August that he would vacate the role due to time pressures. The barrister had spent six years on CA’s board, then became president in November 2009.

Ryan has a big task on his hands as CA has run up large debts. It is also under pressure due to criticism over corporate governance, and has been in the headlines in the past year due to an inquiry over past doping by some officials and riders.

Former pro Stephen Hodge stood down from the vice-President’s position due to the latter, while Matt White and Stuart O’Grady have been under pressure after they admitted having used banned substances during their pro careers.

As a result the federation has toughened its anti-doping policy.

Ryan will seek to get the organisation back on track, and will be aided by a new CEO. That position is expected to be filled shortly, with the new appointee to replace Graham Fredericks, who stepped down this year.

According to Financial Review, Cycling Australia has been told by the Australian Sports Commission that it must merge with other cycling bodies such as BMX Australia plus Mountain Bike Australia. If it doesn’t improve its corporate governance, it will have its federal government funding of approximately $1.7 million cut by twenty percent.

Ryan is a multi millionaire and has proven during his career that he is well able to run businesses. Cycling Australia will hope that his appointment will turn things around.

However in addition to that challenge, he will also have to show balance between his GreenEdge role and that of Cycling Australia, ensuring that there are no problems of a conflict of interest.

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