Jordi Colomer who is the Acting President of the UIAA Board discusses the year ahead for the organization. Colomer comes from Barcelona, Spain and has been a member of the UIAA’s Expedition and Mountaineering Commissions; he was President of the International Ski Mountaineering Committee from 1999 to 2007.
UIAA: What do you see as your role as acting president until the 2012 General Assembly in Amsterdam in October?
Colomer: This is a transient position. The UIAA board consists of three people, Mr. Nico de Jong, General Secretary, Mr. Peter Farkas, Treasurer and myself. . The Management Committee is helping us with several important tasks since the Kathmandu General Assembly last October. I am very optimistic about this year. We started afresh on January 1st and are working on a lot of projects. The relationships are excellent. My main role is to coordinate the efforts of this group of people, organize and run the affairs of the UIAA and prepare for the next General Assembly where a new President will be chosen.
UIAA:The UIAA has gone through a lot of change in the past few years. What do you see as the priorities for 2012?
Colomer: The board has identified the following priorities:
– Improving the UIAA financial situation: A working group has been set up for this task.
– Developing Training Standards courses for UIAA members: We hope to have it approved at the next Board meeting in Bern on 11 February.
– Approval of UIAA Strategic Plan for 2013 to 2016: It will be presented at next UIAA General Assembly in Amsterdam in October.
There are three more important projects that we are working on. They are the mountain protection label, better communication and the development of a marketing and sponsorship plan.
Working closely with UIAA Commissions on their projects is the office staff and commission links from Management Committee. Every commission has a good project planned for 2012 and is working with the UIAA office to successfully complete their objectives.
It is an ambitious plan, but with the help of everybody at the UIAA, we will succeed.
UIAA: What is the key role of the UIAA?
Colomer: The main role of the UIAA which is an international sports federation is to represent mountaineering and climbing associations worldwide. As mountaineers, we have a responsibility and duty to develop a close relationship with the mountains, people who live in the mountains and promote nature conservation.
UIAA:How would you summarize the long-term, multi-year strategic vision for the UIAA that was approved in Kathmandu?
Colomer: Last year, the UIAA Strategic Plan working group led by Mr. Silvio Calvi presented the first draft to the Management Committee in Kathmandu, which is an excellent document. The working group must now finish the plan and present it for approval at the next General Assembly in Amsterdam. The main objective will be a clear plan for the cost, and responsibilities for development of different areas within the strategic plan. The member survey in Jan 2011 gave us a good idea of UIAA members’ vision & expectations, and achieving it will be the task for the next years. A long-term vision will strengthen the UIAA as an International Mountaineering and Climbing Federation. There are also several important projects in development relating to mountaineering, safety, ice climbing competitions, youth, access issues and participation in the Olympic movement.
Best regards to all UIAA members and mountaineer and climbers world-wide.