The International Olympic Committee paid tribute Monday to its former director general Francois Carrard, who has died at the age of 83. The Swiss lawyer, who headed the IOC administration from 1989 until 2003, died in his home city of Lausanne on Sunday, said the International Sports Press Association (AIPS). Carrard was the group’s lawyer. Carrard served IOC presidents Juan Antonio Samaranch and Jacques Rogge during his 14-year term. “Francois Carrard was a brilliant man with immense analytic skills and a very wide horizon,” IOC President Thomas Bach said in a statement.
“President Samaranch and the entire Olympic Movement could always rely on his invaluable advice. He was not only a man of law and sport, but also a great man of culture.
“He was always a great guide and trustful advisor, and became a personal friend. This is why I am so grateful that the entire Olympic Movement and I could count on him until his very last days.”
A doctor of law from the University of Lausanne, Carrard specialised in sports law before becoming the IOC’s director general.
He reshaped the IOC’s administration and played a key role in setting up the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) in 1999 and the anti-doping code.
“WADA would like to recognize the tremendous contribution Mr. Carrard made for the good of sport during his life,” said WADA president Witold Banka in a statement.
“His time as IOC Director General coincided with the establishment and early years of WADA, and he played a crucial role in the formation and early evolution of the Agency.
“WADA would not have been set up in the first place, let alone enjoy the success it has had, without his strong commitment and vision.”
After his work at the IOC, he headed FIFA’s independent reform committee, drafting governance changes approved in 2016 which were aimed at ending the culture of corruption at world football’s governing body.
A jazz enthusiast, he was also vice-chairman of the Montreux Jazz Artists Foundation board, part of the renowned Montreux Jazz Festival.
The Olympic flag will be flown at half-mast at the IOC’s headquarters in Lausanne.
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