Golden 25 -- #2 John Coates

(ATR) IOC Vice-President and Tokyo 2020 Coordination Commission leader.

(ATR) John Coates is a confidante of Thomas Bach and in charge of overseeing Tokyo’s preparations.

Bach’s first appointment was to make Coates the head of the Tokyo 2020 Organizing Committee. The move reflected the IOC chief’s trust in the head of the Australian Olympic Committee, who is also an IOC Vice President. IOC members tell Around the Rings Bach and Coates have had a close relationship for years and few members are as close to Bach asisCoates .

With Tokyo 2020’s venue plans in limbo, Coates is charged with helping to steer the organizing committee back on track. Key decisions must be made in the first few months of the year.

The 64-year-old chaired the bidding procedure commission for Agenda 2020 that introduced a wave of changes to reduce the complexity of the process and make the Olympics a more attractive proposition. Now he has to help implement some of the reforms.

A lawyer by career, Coates has an important role to play as head of the Court of Arbitration for Sport. WADA’s investigations into doping allegations in Russian sport could end up with some rulings made by sport’s highest court. The ongoing probe into allegations of corruption in the FIFA World Cup bidding process, relating to several current and former FIFA ExCo members, may also result in cases being decided by the CAS.

Coates also chairs the IOC Juridical Commission and is a member of the Rio 2016 coordination commission. The co-comm has a busy year ahead to help ensure Brazilian Olympic chiefs deliver their venues on time and stage successful test events.

2014 ranking: 7

The Around the Rings Golden 25, now in its 19th year, is sponsored by EY.

The list spotlights 25 individuals who will have substantial influence on the Olympic Movement in the year ahead. The Golden 25 is compiled by the staff of Around the Rings, the world’s most experienced journalistic team dedicated to covering the Olympics.

The countdown from number 25 began December 20. The number-one position will be announced Jan 1, 2015.

Reported by Mark Bisson

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