Annual General Meeting in Lyon
26 March 2012 - Above, (l-r) FFT President Jean Gachassin, Lyon Tennis League President Jean Wallach, ITF President Francesco Ricci Bitti and Tennis Europe President Jacques Dupré.
The 38th Tennis Europe Annual General Meeting was held from 22-25 March in Lyon, France, where it was hosted by the French Tennis Federation (FFT).
A total of 86 delegates representing 36 member nations were in attendance for the Meeting, which was also the location of meetings of the organisation’s Junior and Development Committees, as well as the Board of Management, concluding their first year together since being elected at the last AGM.
The opening day saw International Tennis Federation President Francesco Ricci Bitti address the gathering of his organisation’s largest regional association with his annual ITF update. Other speakers and topics during the open session included FFT General Secretary Daniel Hette (Future Plans for Roland Garros), the Italian Tennis Federation’s Luisanna Fodde (SuperTennis TV), HEAD’s Folco Canonico (Marketing & Communications Strategies) and former French player, now President of the ASVEL Basketball team, Gilles Moretton (Tennis Career & Transition).
Saturday’s plenary session saw annual reports from Tennis Europe’s President Jacques Dupré and Chief Executive Officer Olli Mäenpää, as well as those of the Chairpersons of the four committees, Günther Lang (Development), Karin van Bijsterveld (Juniors), Stefan Tzvetkov (Professional) and Philios Christodoulou (Seniors), and the Honorary Treasurer, Peter Bretherton.
Reflecting a relatively quiet year in constitutional terms, there were no applications for changes to membership status, and no other amendments to the rules.
During the Meeting, an agreement was signed with the Special Olympics under which Tennis Europe will help the organisation with their work to promote sporting opportunities for people with intellectual disabilities.
Tennis Europe President Jacques Dupré remarked, “It has been a busy but stable year for our organisation and the new Board of Management, as the committee reports have shown. I believe that we have had a successful meeting and that our member nations are satisfied with our work to serve and represent them. I am particularly pleased to have signed the agreement with the Special Olympics, an organisation whose work I strongly support. I would like to express my gratitude to Mr. Ricci Bitti for his presence and would also like to thank FFT President Jean Gachassin and his staff for their kind invitation to host the Meeting, and the President of the Lyon Tennis League Jean Wallach for the excellent social programme that we have enjoyed here in Lyon.”
The hosts organised a diverse range of activities for guests and partners, including a reception at the City Hall, a Saône & Rhône river cruise, a gastronomic workshop and tasting session, a visit to the silk weaving museum La Maison des Canuts, and a closing dinner at the historic Chateau de Pizay.
The official dinner was once again the venue for the presentation of Tennis Europe’s annual awards for outstanding contributions to the game. These were given to Serghei Afanasenco (MDA), Nana Busina & Genrikh Feigin (RUS), Gavin Fletcher (GBR), Sergeii Lashkul (UKR), Florenta Mihai (ROU), José Antonio Senz de Broto (ESP) and Slobodan Zivojinovic (SRB). European Tennis Trophies were also awarded to 2011 winners Netherlands (Wheelchair Tennis), Germany (Seniors Tennis), Russia (Junior Tennis) and Spain (Professional Tennis & Overall Performance), while special recognitions were given to Romania (Best-Performing ‘B’ Nation), Serbia (Best-Performing ‘C’ Nation), Greece (Greatest Improvement) and Czech Republic (Outstanding Achievement).
The next AGM will be hosted by the Estonian Tennis Association in Tallinn from 21-24 March, 2013.