RIO DE JANEIRO: Marius Vizer will remain as the President of the International Judo federation for a further four years after being re-elected at the federation’s Congress in Rio de Janeiro.

Vizer has helped transform judo and its world federation since taking charge in 2007, in part by developing a World Judo Tour.

At his appointment Vizer said: “I am very emotional because we have worked together for six years with trust, collaboration and respect. I thank all officials, our IJF Executive Committee, the IJF staff, and everyone involved in the judo world. Thank you very much.”

During his time as President, Vizer has established judo in the Olympic movement and introduced rule changes that have made the sport more appealing to a wider audience.

Vizer is also the President of SportAccord, the umbrella organisation for Olympic and non-Olympic sports, after being elected in May this year.

At the time of his SportAccord election, Vizer confirmed that he would not leave the IJF.

New Executive Committee members

“It is a well-known fact that my life has been dedicated to Judo and sports in general and this shall remain unchanged,” he said after being elected SportAccord President. “I am ready to put my time and energy to the service of development and progress of all sports.

“By combining Judo with SportAccord activities, I consider that we can bring more values in both organisations.”

The overall feeling at the IJF conference was positive, with Vizer talking about the abolishment of participation fees, Judo’s upgrade in Olympic class and the ‘significant development’ the sport has made in the broadcast sector.

The IJF also elected new members to the Executive Committee – Arkady Rottenberg, President of St Petersburg Judo Club was elected as IJF Development Manager.

Jose Humberto Rodriguez, USA Judo Chief Executive Officer became a new IJF Executive Committee member as IJF Development Director, whilst Hedi Dhouib, who is stepping out of the executive board after many years has become the IJF Director of International Affairs.