Pierce O'Callaghan has been appointed by the European Olympic Committees (EOC) as European Games senior consultant, it was announced today.
The Irishman had been the sports director at the inaugural European Games in Baku last year.
O’Callaghan’s immediate focus will be on working with the next hosts of the European Games, which is expected to be confirmed later this year as Kazan and Sochi in Russia.
His long-term aim will be developing the future of the European Games so that it has a sustainable future.
O'Callaghan, a former head of communications at European Athletics, will also be expected to ensure that athletics has a prominent role in future editions of the Games.
For the inaugural European Games last summer, O’Callaghan oversaw the delivery of 239 medal events in 20 sports, 16 Olympic and four non-Olympic sports.
A total of 6,000 athletes from 50 countries competed.
Athletics, however, was poorly represented.
A European Athletics Team Championships Third League competition, the lowest tier of the event, with 17 teams from smaller European athletics nations, including Azerbaijan, was held, and it lacked any of the continent's top names.
It followed the failure to get European Athletics to commit to the European Games because they claimed their calendar had already been set.
O'Callaghan, however, is a close ally of newly-elected European Athletics President Sven Arne Hansen, who has already indicated he is willing to find a solution so the sport is more involved in 2019.
Since 2011 O'Callaghan has also been a member of the influential European Athletics Event and Competition Commission.
“As we move closer to confirming a host city for the 2019 European Games, it’s vital to have the best talent in the right roles," Patrick Hickey, President of the EOC, said here, where he is attending the International Olympic Committee Executive Board meeting.
"Pierce did an excellent job in preparing the sports programme for Baku 2015 and I’m delighted that he has joined the EOC team to take up this dedicated role on the European Games.
"His experience will be vital right from the off as our work around the European Games 2019 is increasing significantly in 2016.”
O'Callaghan, 40, is a former race walker and won 16 Irish titles.
He has been appointed as an international technical official at the last three Olympic Games, as well as in various roles at the Commonwealth Games, the Asian Games and the World University Games.
In 2010, after establishing his own consultancy company SAVVY Sports with his wife Tamara, O'Callaghan was a member of the EOC Commission tasked with exploring the possibility of staging a European Games.
He also worked closely on Sebastian Coe's successful election campaign to become new President of the International Association of Athletics Federations.