LEN Executive Director Paulo Frischknecht leaves his position, Gianni Minervini to head the LEN Office

Mr. Paulo Frischknecht has been the Executive Director of LEN since 1st October 2013.
In his capacity, Mr. Frischknecht has provided a much-appreciated leadership and actively participated in the improvement of LEN’s strategic modern positioning at all specific levels under his control and responsibility.

That being said, Mr. Frischknecht and LEN President Paolo Barelli both felt recently that undertaking further discussions about the Executive Director’s career path, operational role and practical aspirations were of adamant significance for the immediate future of the parties involved, mainly due to some upstretched personal reasons.

Following this, a joint decision of mutual consent was taken where Mr. Frischknecht would no longer cultivate his present duties and position as LEN Executive Director.

Yet, in view of his recognised professional knowledge, utmost expertise within the administration of Sports Organisations and respected and qualified supervising skills, LEN would be interested to keep his cooperation in different capacities – presumably as a Sports Management Consultant and/or Special Projects Senior Advisor. The main features of this forthcoming collaboration bond are yet to be determined in full.

“The LEN Family really appreciates what Paulo Frischknecht has done for European Aquatics in the past four years and all of us are really grateful for his commitment and professionalism” LEN President Paolo Barelli said after announcing the agreement described above to the LEN Bureau at its latest meeting in Ostia. “LEN went through tremendous growth in recent years, it’s a common success of the National Federations, our great athletes, coaches, officials and the LEN leadership, the LEN Bureau and the LEN Office which has been headed by Mr. Frischknecht since 2013. Thanks to the joint efforts, Europe is maintaining its position as the most successful continent in the world of aquatics.”

This is what Paulo Frischknecht had to say: “I truly feel blessed and grateful for the great opportunity that was presented to me back in 2013… other than, of course, rather proud, privileged and flattered, for the enduring professional trials assigned to me during these last few years, whilst keenly experiencing being part of LEN’s most recent organizational improvements, event developing upgrades, and ongoing sample setting showcases, also before different reference sport international federations.

Evidently, none of the above outlooks would have been possible without the permanent sustenance of an overzealous President, an enthusiastic Bureau, precisely competent Technical Committees and Commissions, and an everlasting devoted and skilful Staff, at every moment of such a bumpy but challenging road.

However, it was mainly due to the highest support, uppermost assistance, and absolute companionship, that unselfish true sport loving folks representing LEN’s 52 affiliated National Federations across Europe (their Athletes, Coaches, and Officials), continuously and thoughtfully inspiring us along the way with their outstanding performances and results, that most of our paramount efforts made full sense.

Trusting on an even brighter future for European Aquatics, while keeping our Continent’s leading example, and firmly believing in the Executive righteous appointment of Mr. Minervini, I wish my friend Gianni all the best in this very demanding position.”

The LEN President also announced that effective 1 October 2017, Gianni Minervini, currently LEN Office and Financial Manager, is appointed LEN Executive Director and that Marco Birri, LEN Operations Manager will maintain his current role aimed at continuing the fruitful work in favour of the development of the LEN disciplines.

As former swimmer, Mr. Minervini competed in three consecutive Olympics (1984, 1988, 1992). He won a silver medal in the 100m breaststroke at the 1986 World Championships in Madrid and a bronze medal in the same event at the 1991 World Championships in Perth. He also won a total of five bronze medals at European Championships (100m breaststroke: Strasbourg 1987, Athens 1991; 4x100m medley: Sofia 1985, Bonn 1989; 50m breaststroke: Gelsenkirchen 1991 Short Course).

After finishing his career as an athlete, in 1994 he joined Procter & Gamble where he held Domestic, Regional and Global roles on various product categories.

He was the Associate Director of the organising committee of the 2009 FINA World Championships held in Rome. He has been with LEN since November 2015.

“It is a great honour to be nominated for this very important position” Mr. Minervini said. “LEN’s most important role is to serve the athletes, the coaches, the officials and the National Federations in the most effective way possible. I am fully determined and committed to do my best in this new position to ensure that the LEN Member Federations, European Aquatics and the LEN Office continue to grow stronger and stronger and more and more successful globally.”

Press release from LEN


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