The International Golf Federation Board elected three-time U.S. Women’s Open champion Annika Sorenstam as IGF president, effective Jan. 1, 2021. The election took place during a virtual meeting yesterday focused on long-term strategic planning and progress toward next summer’s Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games.
Sorenstam succeeds Peter Dawson, who notified the board that he would not seek reappointment when his current two-year term expires at the end of the year.
“It has been a great pleasure and privilege to serve as IGF President,” Dawson said. “Golf's reinstatement to the Olympics was a landmark for our sport and it was a true thrill to witness our return at Rio 2016. I wish my successor, Annika Sorenstam, every success. The IGF could not be in better hands.”
“With Peter’s impending departure, we are thrilled to have someone as accomplished and universally respected as Annika Sorenstam to move into the role as IGF President,” said IGF Board Chairman and PGA Tour Commissioner Jay Monahan. “As a generational talent in women’s golf, Annika played a prominent role in golf’s successful Olympic bid by serving as a Global Ambassador with Jack Nicklaus and since retiring from competition, has been dedicated to promoting women’s golf at all levels through her foundation. She is the ideal person to succeed Peter in this role.”
“Peter did a great job the last 10 years as IGF President and I am humbled and honored to have been asked to succeed him,” Sorenstam said. “As an international player, having golf back in the Olympics means so much to me and to our sport. I very much look forward to working with the Board, the IOC and the governing bodies of golf in their efforts to continue to grow the game globally.”
Originally scheduled for the Olympic House in Lausanne but moved online due to the continued impact of COVID-19, the board was addressed by International Olympic Committee President Thomas Bach on the status of the Olympic movement and then followed by IOC Sports Director Kit McConnell, who provided updates and answered questions regarding preparations for Tokyo. The overarching message was one of determination and confidence that the Olympic competition will proceed as scheduled with particular focus on health, safety and the simplification and reduction of the complexity of the Games. The board expressed support and a shared commitment to deliver the golf competition with safety for the athletes and all involved a top priority.