Former athletes are appointed as non-executive directors at the national governing body
Olympians Marilyn Okoro and Wendy Sly will join the UK Athletics board as non-executive directors from February 1. Okoro competed in the 800m and won 4x400m bronze at the 2008 Beijing Olympics, whereas Sly won Olympic 3000m silver at the 1984 LA Games and is the current managing director at AW.
Okoro has also run 1:58.45 – a time that ranks her No.10 on the UK all-time 800m rankings – and outside of competition she is highly regarded in championing mental health, social mobility and athlete welfare, in addition to being a graduate of an accredited programme in corporate governance.
Sly, meanwhile, also won the world 10km title during her career and she has enjoyed a successful career in publishing and continues to serve the sport in roles including team management, athlete mentoring and has previously served a term on the board of England Athletics.
Beattie said: “On behalf of the board I would like to welcome Marilyn and Wendy into these crucial non-executive roles and look forward to us benefitting from the experience they will bring to UKA.
“The quality of applications for these roles was very impressive and I would like to thank all the shortlisted candidates for their interest and engagement in this process as without exception all were of an incredibly high standard.
“The composition of the board is essential for the success of the organisation and I am delighted with the mix of expertise around the table. I have no doubt they will provide excellent support and guidance for the leadership team in what is an exciting year for athletics.”
Okoro said: “I am elated to have been appointed to the board of UKA. As an athlete you want to be involved and help the sport and I am thrilled with this opportunity. The sport is in my blood, and I hope that I can help bridge the gap between the board and the sport and provide an athlete voice.
“I am excited by the joined-up approach outlined by Athletics Unified as I know when the sport collaborates and works together great things can happen. It’s an exciting time to be involved and I look forward to working with Ian and the rest of the board of UKA.”
Sly added: “I’m thrilled to be involved in a new era, not just for UKA but for the whole sport in the UK. I’ve spent 50 years of my life in the sport that I love and I am honoured to have this opportunity to join the board at this exciting time.
“I’ve been privileged to have been involved with team management, and mentoring athletes over the years, so I hope that I can continue to be a familiar face to everyone in the sport and be an approachable figure on the board.
“There have been quite a few changes in the last couple of years and it is great to be part of the new look UKA board that really reflects and has a connection with the sport.”