Ski & Snowboard Australia (SSA) has created history as the first Olympic sport in Australia to unify into a single organisation to govern the whole sport from the grassroots to the elite.
Effective from today, the sport of skiing & snowboarding will operate as one entity bringing together and capitalising on the strengths of the remaining State bodies Snowsports ACT (SACT) and NSW Snowsports (NSWS) to unify under the SSA banner.
The move comes on the back of extensive consultation between all stakeholders, with each group recognising that operating as one entity will be the most effective way to consolidate the regional activities and achieve the sport’s mission.
The unification model will mean that all resources and operations will be streamlined into one business and will remove any duplication, with an ability to have one strategy, workforce and financial management system in place.
Ski & Snowboard Australia President, Dean Gosper, applauded all stakeholders for their commitment to working collaboratively to establish a solution in the best interest of developing the sport.
“Unification reflects the courage and vision of the State communities who have looked beyond their own borders and now see the benefits of working as a single national organisation for the benefit of the sport.
“SSA will be a more effective partner to our athletes, our volunteers, our funders, and to the industry,” he said.
A unified SSA will allow the sport to speak with a single, clear voice, particularly when dealing with its valued stakeholders such as our funding partners and resort hosts.
Importantly, it will also provide enhanced integration of pathways for young athletes.
The outcome is a result of cooperation between all parties and is the extension of a Sport Australia (SA) governance review some years ago and, more recently, a call from SA for sporting organisations to strive for unification as a model of best practice.
The leadership groups of each of the three snowsports organisations have led the process and maintained frequent and transparent communication with the various communities.
All existing staff will be re-employed and a number of key SSA responsibilities will be decentralised to the new Jindabyne office to take advantage of the proximity to on-snow facilities during winter.
SSA is working with the New South Wales Government Department Sport & Recreation on how the facility can be further enhanced to maximise the opportunity for athletes and coaches in the future.
Unification will relieve the two State Organisations (SSO’s) of direct governance responsibilities but will preserve their financial and operational activities inside of SSA. This has already happened in Victoria with regional activities channelled through State Discipline Committees and the Victorian Interschools Committee.
The unification structure will also include the protection of certain assets such as the Nordic Shelter at Perisher, various SSO Foundations and SSO cash reserves. These will be held in an SSA Northern account structure and overseen by a Northern Management Committee chaired by the existing Chairs of New South Wales and ACT.