Brown elected British Judo Association chairman two decades on from Olympic drugs shame
Sunday, 14 October 2012
October 14 - Kerrith Brown, who suffered the disgrace of being stripped of his bronze medal at the Seoul 1988 Olympics after testing positive for banned performance-enhancing drugs, has been elected as the new British Judo Association (BJA) chairman.
The move comes 24 years after the former elite judoka won Olympic bronze in Seoul, as he did in Los Angeles four years earlier, only to lose it this time round after he tested positive for fusemide, which is used to decrease weight or reduce swelling.
Brown (pictured above) admitted taking the diuretic to treat a swollen knee and was sent home and banned for three months.
The story was big news at the same time as sprinter Linford Christie tested positive for pseudoephedrine, but unlike Brown, controversially escaped being punished because the International Olympic Committee (IOC) accepted his explanation that he had ingested it unknowingly in ginseng tea.
At those Games, Christie was also upgraded to the silver medal in the 100 metres after Canadian Ben Johnson tested positive for anabolic steroids and was stripped of the gold medal.
Brown succeeds Densign White in the role after being elected by the British Judo membership.
White, the husband of 1984 Olympic javelin champion Tessa Sanderson, decided to step down after being accused of "rotten leadership" by veteran Olympian Winston Gordon after criticising some athletes and questioning their commitment during London 2012, where Britain won one silver medal and one bronze.
Brown was nominated for the post by the Midland Area Committee and elected after issuing a nine-point manifesto that pledged to improve coach education and resources, competition structure for children and communications throughout the Association.
"I'm elated to have been elected as chairman of the British Judo Association," said Brown, who will assume the role from the BJA Annual General Meeting on November 10.
"It marks a full journey for me in the sport from the age of 12 right through to the highest level as a player and now as chair.
"I've been campaigning for 12 months and it's been hard work as there were some very strong candidates for the role.
"I'd like to say my congratulations to those who have been elected onto the board - this represents a new era for British Judo."
Brown saw off three other contenders for the role, including Roy Inman, who was the BJA national coach for over 15 years and coached at three Olympic Games, where his players have won six Olympic medals.
Inman is also part of the panel currently conducting a review of the sport following the London 2012 Olympics.
The other two candidates were former Olympian and European champion Rowena Birch and double European and former world champion Loretta Doyle.
Elections also took place for positions on British Judo's Board of Directors.
Dave Clark was re-elected to the Board, while Andrew Haffner and Peter Blewett have also been elected.
This means that Reuben Davison and Brian Davies will leave the Board.
"I am especially pleased and proud that our members again trusted me to assist the Board of the BJA, and the new chair, to deliver the ambitions of 'our' association," said Clark.
"The members will be at the heart of every decision I take as a Board member and I look forward to supporting them throughout my term."
Haffner and Blewett also expressed delight at being elected.
"I'd like to thank everyone who voted for all the candidates," said Haffner.
"There's a lot of work that needs to be done and I will try my best to achieve everything I set out in my manifesto.
"I'd welcome any views from anyone who is interested in judo in Britain."
Blewett added: "I'm absolutely delighted to be elected and I have to thank everyone who voted.
"To be elected is a very exciting opportunity to take our distinguished Association forward.
"I feel proud and privileged and look forward to making a difference."