The latest meeting of the IMMAF Board of Directors took place by video conference on April 20th.
Cristiano Gadelha Sampaio of Brazil has been appointed as a new member of the IMMAF Regulatory Commission.
Cristiano is a Member of the Executive Board of the Brazilian MMA Athletic Commission (CABMMA), and a former President, responsible for the operational management of events, development of protocols and technical guidelines, training and qualification of staff, administrative and financial manager.
He has had an executive and consulting career in Regulatory Affairs, adding value to the business chain through operational efficiency, planning and operations, and project management.
He is also coordinator of the High-Performance Sports Development Council in Rio de Janeiro, carrying out sports activities with socio-educational purposes offered to the population living in the neighbourhood surrounding the Olympic Village.
The IMMAF Board approved requests for Membership from the following countries, representing 3 continents: USA, Netherlands, Vietnam, Grenada and Turkmenistan. More details about these new federations will be published in the coming weeks.
The IMMAF Board also accepted the suspension of IMMAF Members from Canada, Latvia, Sierra Leone and South Korea.
The IMMAF Board agreed that the time was right to organize a thought leadership event on the subject of transgender athlete participation in combat sports.
The thought leadership event, which will be organised at the end of June, aims to discuss two topics:
1. IMMAF currently has a policy in place that does not permit transgender athlete inclusion in existing male and female competition categories on a safety basis. But is a third, open category a solution to enabling transgender athlete inclusion in combat sports competition? What are the ethical, medical, and logistical considerations?
2. What are the considerations for developing policies and guidelines for recreational participation at the national level across political and cultural boundaries?
The aim of the event is:
To build on the success of IMMAF’s previous Thought Leadership event on Weight Management in Sport which attracted a global audience from across the sport.
To continue to position IMMAF as a bold, thought leader in the Olympic Sporting world.
To highlight IMMAF’s good governance practices and depth of consideration given to policymaking, as informed by its committees and expert panels (medical, anti-doping, officiating, ethics, law).
To progress dialogue in combat sports in a meaningful way, since there is currently no public dialogue in this space.
To inform IMMAF’s own policy development in this area.
To build connections and collaborative relationships with other sports and sports influencers.
More details on the Thought Leadership Panel and timings will be released at a later date.
IMMAF’s Head of Anti-doping, Michele Verroken made a briefing to the Board on the consequences of IMMAF’s achievement of signatory status by the World Anti-Doping Agency.
Under the 2021 World Anti-Doping Code, IMMAF and its member federations are committed to achieving full compliance with the obligations of an International Federation. The impact of integrity governance requirements will impact across the organisation.
Michele set out the International Federation Roles and Responsibilities required under the Code, the actions IMMAF is taking, and the impacts on policy and operations. Key clauses were highlighted and details of the actions and impacts were noted.
In other governance news, CEO Densign White discussed the Board Member evaluation that is currently being undertaken as part of IMMAF’s commitment to best practice governance.
Finally, the Board noted the resignation of one of its members, Galimzhan Yessenov, representing Kazakhstan.