Sport England, the strategic lead for sport in England, today announced the appointment of English badminton chief executive and former Commonwealth and European badminton champion Stephen Baddeley as its new Director of Sport.
Stephen will lead Sport England’s drive to improve the country’s sporting infrastructure and to bring about the effective delivery of sport at all levels.

Currently Chief Executive of the Badminton Association of England (BAofE), Stephen has extensive experience of performance sport, Governing Bodies and sports development. He has an outstanding track record in senior
management, as an elite sportsman and in coaching. During his time as Chief Executive, Stephen has overseen a major period of growth at the BAofE, which has increased its turnover four-fold, as well as leading the £5m redevelopment of the National Badminton Centre. Both as CEO and previously as Director of Performance, he has played a pivotal role in badminton’s recent successes
on the world stage, including its first-ever Olympic medal in Sydney and subsequent success in Athens last week.

As Sport England’s Director of Sport, Stephen will look to build on Team England’s sporting achievements – including their success at the Manchester Commonwealth Games – as we look ahead to the Melbourne Games in 2006. He will work closely with the Sport England funded English Institute of Sport (EIS) and establish strong working relationships with other partners to implement programmes aimed at delivering both increased participation and world class sporting success.

Stephen will lead the implementation of four-year business plans in priority sports and the development of strategies for the potential modernisation of key national governing body (NGB) structures. He will also provide the strategic lead for sports development policies linking schools, clubs and communities, as well as the infrastructure for coaching and volunteer development, ensuring the effective progression of sporting talent to the highest levels.

Roger Draper, Chief Executive of Sport England said: ‘We are delighted Steve has agreed to join Sport England as Director of Sport. He brings with him an acknowledged reputation for strategic leadership, personal achievement and administrative success having delivered major change and success within badminton. As well as sound business acumen, he has extensive experience of the current policy environment, the media and funding systems for sport
and has extensive contacts within partner organisations – all of which will be vital to this key new strategic role.’

Commenting on his appointment, Stephen Baddeley said: ‘I am a passionate believer in sport’s potential to contribute to culture, society and improving the health of our nation and I look forward to playing a key
role in Sport England’s drive to deliver both increased participation and success on the international stage. A solid and effective sporting infrastructure to develop talented athletes is vital to achieving these dual objectives.’

For further information please contact:

Vivien Paulson-Ellis, Communications Manager, Sport England, Tel: 020 7273 1822,
Mobile: 07798 677860.