CEO Update - June 2016

Articles | Friday, Jul 15, 2016

Firstly apologies for the lateness of this CEO Update, we have certainly entered the Olympic Games and Paralympic Games crazy zone.

As you would all be aware recently the selection of our Olympic Team was finalised with the addition of Adam Vella and Mitch Iles and the omission of Michael Diamond. This was an extremely difficult time for all three of these athletes and I want to publicly commend them for the way they have worked through this. Michael is of course disappointed that he was deemed ineligible against the Australian Olympic Committee selection and nomination criteria, but understands and has moved on. Despite some incorrect media reports Shooting Australia did and will continue to support Michael to ensure his life off the range is in order. I am, as you should all be, proud of the way our sport has not cast aside Michael, but instead has continued to assist and support him through this tough time. We are of course delighted and excited for Mitch and Adam and are working with them in their final preparations.

Unfortunately, I again need to take up the issue of the few individuals who are not a part of our team, who selfishly continue to go to the media to spread innuendo and mistruths. I wrote last month that “It is ironic and obvious to all that you cannot pretend you are helping a sport when all you do is try to promulgate issues that are intended to make the sport, and the people within it look bad”. Sadly these few individuals who pretend to care about our sport continue to go to the media and attack individuals within our sport. These personal attacks particularly against our athletes are mean-spirited, calculated, and downright nasty. In a time where we should be celebrating and focussing on athlete achievement we find athletes being attacked, denigrated, and shamed publicly. These few individuals should be ashamed of themselves and embarrassed for the way they are deliberately attacking our athletes and deliberately impacting on their performances and preparation for Rio. I apologise publicly in this forum to the vast majority of you who love our sport, because I know that these individuals are not done yet attacking our athletes and our sport.

Make no mistake the performance of our athletes this year and in the last few years has been outstanding. However a few bitter people will try to use this time of celebration and excitement for their own self-promotion and for their own agenda.


I want to take the time to address some misinformation that continues to be in the media, so that you, our shooting community, know the truth.

Olympic Selection - The Selection Committee used around 15 different performance factors and measures in coming to their decision and Australian ranking is not one of them, because no such thing exists. We believe it doesn’t benefit anyone for SA to correct inaccuracies of the incorrect data and performances being reported, and so we won’t, we are instead focussed on supporting our selected athletes.

Double Standards - It’s a ridiculous claim that we don’t apply the same consequences for all our athletes. It is inappropriate to discuss communications between athletes and Shooting Australia, however on occasion Shooting Australia have to speak to our athletes about their behaviour and so we do.

Did we force an athlete to apologise – No we didn’t. Yes we wrote to an athlete asking them to consider their position, we have heard back from that athlete and we are comfortable with the response. The media and some individuals who have nothing to do with our team are intent on making this a bigger issue than it is. Our athletes just want to get on with focussing on Rio.


The area of communication is one that Shooting Australia continues to take very seriously. The creation and distribution of these monthly updates was in fact implemented due to feedback received from Member Bodies wanting more regular updates. So to this end if you or someone you know is not receiving these monthly updates please feel free to subscribe by emailing Kelly our Media, Marketing and Communications Manager. Alternatively subscribe directly from our website. 

Institute of Sport Programs

In a time where Institutes of Sport are reducing or removing the sports that they support Shooting Australia has been granted three programs. This is HUGE for the sport of shooting! For the first time ever we will be a program partner at two institutes who will be investing significantly in our sport. There is no greater endorsement to our improved performance profile, improved leadership and governance, and improved and developing athlete cohort, than to have two institutes want to have shooting programs as part of their limited suite of sports. This is a first for the sport of shooting.

Whole of Sport Governance Review

There seems to be some miscommunication as to the status of the Whole of Sport Governance Review. Therefore I have left the below information which was included in my May CEO update. On the 10th of May we wrote to our Member Body Key Contacts notifying them of the update on the Whole of Sport Governance Review that is being undertaken. The key part of this Memo read:

... the Board made the decision to defer releasing the report for a number of reasons which include:

  1. The Board are seeking further clarification from Suiko Consultancy on a number of items contained within the report;
  2. The Board are going to be seeking further data and information on two key areas in order to better inform the recommendations and required strategies that will come from this report;
  3. The Board felt strongly that releasing a report of this scope and magnitude three months out from an Olympic/Paralympic Games was not a prudent strategy and has the potential to distract effort, thought and resources at a time when we are fully committed to supporting our athletes and focused on providing our athletes with a distraction free preparation. This position is supported by the Australian Sports Commission.

The Board is committed to this review and the outcomes that will come from it and so the above is a considered plan that this report is delivered at the right time, with the right information, and support, that is required. Simply sending out a report of this importance without this level of consideration and planning would be irresponsible and the Board will not do this.

For more information on this or to read the full statement please click here.

High Performance Policy Review

This is a gentle reminder that the timing for individuals to submit their ideas, plans, or draft policies, is coming to a close. We are after as many diverse ideas and strategies as possible to ensure that our policies for the next quadrennial deliver the right results for our sport. I want to also remind individuals considering a submission that this is a high performance program not a participation program and therefore any idea cannot compromise the preparation and performance of our best athletes and is ultimately about winning medals at events that matter. For more information on this click here.


Our athletes are in their final preparations and we ask you all to get behind and support the team. The performance of our athletes over the last few years has been tremendous and we head to Rio full of confidence and optimism. On behalf of the whole community I would like to wish our athletes all the best and know that we are proud of you.


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