Nigel Holl has agreed to take on a part-time role with UK Athletics as their ‘Head of Strategy’, in addition to his existing responsibilities as chief executive of scottishathletics.
The role will see Holl providing leadership to the key Strategic Advisory Committees set up by UK Athletics to provide guidance to the Boards of UK Athletics, the Boards of the Home Country Athletic Federations and the UK Members Council.
Holl will have responsibility to ensure that the views of member clubs and member athletes from across the UK are fully represented and that all strategic recommendations are in line with the agreed Athlete Development Model.
Both scottishathletics chairman, Ian Beattie, and Nigel himself believe that ultimately the dual role will be beneficial for the progression of the sport in Scotland via greater links and influence at UK-level.
Ian Beattie said: ‘Ultimately, with the 2014 referendum well behind us, we have been very clear in our planning at scottishathletics and understand our role and that of UK athletics – and where we interact and meet.
‘That clarity drives an imperative to ensure a close working relationship and mutual understanding. I know the relationship is strong these days and I am committed to ensuring this develops.
‘I feel sure that Nigel’s additional role will serve to strengthen that bond to the benefit of all involved.’
Nigel Holl said: ‘This is an exciting role to take in addition to my responsibilities in Scotland.
‘There is some excellent thinking going on within the sport and I see this role as a chance to ensure greater integration– making sure that great ideas and concepts are considered carefully in terms of the impact and benefit right across the country at all levels.
‘One of the notable changes in recent years, has been the formation of and formalisation of what we refer to as the Chief Executive Officer Forum.
‘Comprising the CEOs from across the athletics bodies in the UK, this forum gives a real opportunity to progress strategic thinking on a UK basis; share best practice; tackle challenging issues up front; and generally endeavour to provide a consistency – where appropriate – to our members and governance structures across the UK.
‘This new role, I see as an extension of that work. But I will also be trying to ensure that there is a greater element of linking between the various groups that do have a major impact on our sport.
‘The ongoing Competition Review has major potential impact and opportunities; but that needs our Officials policies, our Rules Review, our Coaching Priorities to be ‘joined-up’ if the athlete pathway is to benefit to the maximum.
‘So, currently, whilst that need is clear, there isn’t a clear manner of ensuring those links at the right time.
‘I see this now as a key part of my role – I hope a role that will bring direct benefit to athletics in Scotland. I would want to use so much of what we know works well here to bring benefit to the wider athletics family across the UK.
‘I’m excited and slightly daunted by the challenge. But, to be clear, it is a part-time remit and my main and principal priorities remain very firmly those here in Scotland.’
The first strategy project that Nigel will take on is the completion and implementation of the current Competition Review which aims to publish its recommendations later in 2015.
UK Athletics chief executive, Neils de Vos, said: ‘Myself and the four home country CEOs meet monthly to discuss and agree strategic priorities for the sport.
‘We all felt it was important to extend that process and to engage Home Country leadership directly in the decision making processes, and this is why I asked Nigel to take on this role.’