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Kuno Ritschard

Kuno Ritschard

Honored in 

With almost 90 affiliated Federations around the world, serving as President of our International Waterski & Wakeboard Federation is always challenging and Kuno Richard’s impact has been truly extraordinary. Beginning with success on the water as Swiss National Slalom Champion and National Tournament Team member, he entered Officialdom in 1980, qualifying as a Disabled Waterski 1st Class Judge and later as a Tournament 1st Class Judge. In 1992, he was elected Secretary General of our Europe Africa Middle East (EAME) Confederation and five years later as President of EAME. Those nine years at the top of IWWF’s largest Confederation prepared him very well for his September 2001 election as IWWF President. For 16 years from 2001-2017, he directed the IWWF from near bankruptcy back to full health. Past debts and loans, once repaid, placed the IWWF in financial trouble in 2004. As we all know, the Swiss are clever Bankers! When Kuno handed over the Presidency in 2016, IWWF net assets then exceeded US$ 500,000, an outstanding achievement. His global ambitions for our sport, attracting sponsors and gaining wider exposure were critical. Building relationships with the International Olympic Committee plus the promotion of IWWF in Multi Sport Games gained much wider respect. His 24/7 personal commitment and travel obligations were exceptional. In 2004, convincing MasterCraft to provide boats for his fledgling World Cup Series was ground-breaking. Funds generated by this World Cup project played a significant role in the turnaround of IWWF finances. With the 50th World Cup Stop coming soon, few thought this would be possible back in 2004. As of today, almost $6 million in cash prizes was paid to our athletes and more than $20 million invested by hosts in staging the events. More recently, finalising a major sponsorship agreement with Nautique / Correct Craft, made it possible for the IWWF to fund a full-time Executive Director, significant titled events and more. All in all, President Kuno Ritschard’s contribution to our sport has been exceptional and all make his induction tonight to our International Hall of Fame a very well deserved honour.

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