Eugenie Buckley takes over from Alex Baumann as Swimming Australia CEO on fulltime basis

October 27, 2021 by No Comments

Interim boss Eugenie Buckley won over Swimming Australia with her ‘incredible ability to build and execute a strategy’ to land the fulltime CEO gig.

Experienced sports administrator Eugenie Buckley has been appointed CEO of Swimming Australia, replacing former boss Alex Baumann, who quit for health reasons just a day after the Olympics.

Buckley, who had been acting in the position since Baumann stepped down in August, has an extensive background in sports events and administration and her strategic vision and people-oriented approach impressed the board and nominations committee.

Swimming Australia president Kieren Perkins was full of praise for Buckley’s efforts as interim boss.

“It was clear very early on that Eugenie was someone with incredible ability to build and execute a strategy for Australian swimming,” Perkins said.

“Her passion for the sport and not just the administration and athletes but the wider community of member organisations, stakeholders and fans was infectious.

“She is a modern leader with a people-first attitude and the business acumen to ensure swimming is on the right trajectory heading towards Paris in three years, but also with an eye to Brisbane 2032.”

Australian swimming experienced an incredibly successful Olympic campaign in Tokyo, winning 20 medals, including nine gold, but the sport has challenges outside the pool.

A Swimming Australia independent panel is focusing on the treatment of women and girls in the sport over the last five years.

And while he did not mention the investigation specifically, or the scrutiny on the sport to reform, Perkins gave a nod to her importance in that space, saying Buckley had a “calm and measured approach to the challenges swimming is facing”.

“With our strategic plan nearing finalisation we felt Eugenie was the right person to lead us through this transformative period and further build our sport into an industry leader,” he said.

Buckley said it was the challenge of taking the sport to the next level that led her to apply for the position full-time.

“I feel like swimming is well placed to take advantage of the opportunities in front of us in this next period,” Buckley said.

“We have just come off an incredible Olympic and Paralympic campaign in Tokyo, with our Olympic squad having their best performance ever, so we are well positioned for success in the pool.

“With Brisbane 2032 on the horizon, the chance to lead the sport through this next growth phase is exciting.

“There are a lot of passionate people within the swimming community and I look forward to tackling the challenges and embracing the future together.”

New CEO revealed for Paralympics Australia

– Selina Steele

Paralympics Australia will today announce Catherine Clark as their new CEO for the departing Lynne Anderson.

Clark will depart her current role as CEO of Netball Queensland in December to take up her new appointment as chief executive of Paralympics Australia from 2022.

Anderson led Paralympics Australia for six years before announcing in July she was stepping away from the role after the Paralympics in Japan.

In Japan, Australia finished with 80 medals across 10 different sports, finishing with 21 gold, 29 silver and 30 bronze.

Clark, who has previously held the roles of CEO of Gymnastics New Zealand and Gymnastics Australia, said: “I have absolutely loved my time with Netball Queensland.

“We’ve achieved some outstanding results as a community these past seven years including record participation growth, a purpose-built $45 million home of netball in Nissan Arena, creating our Diamond Spirit program for young Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander

women and even two Queensland Firebirds premierships.

“However, the sport’s most valuable asset though is its people. I’ll always be grateful for the opportunity to work, collaborate and lead with such a wonderful group of values-driven people without whom community sport just wouldn’t happen.” 

Clark will remain with Netball Queensland until the end of the year before joining

Paralympics Australia in January.

Netball Queensland chief operating officer Mike Anderson will act as Interim CEO until a new CEO is appointed. 

Originally published as Eugenie Buckley takes over from Alex Baumann as Swimming Australia CEO on fulltime basis

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