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Football Association executive appointed by under-fire British Cycling

By Matthew Campelli    07 Mar 2017
Harrington has spent 15 years in senior sports roles

Julie Harrington – the woman responsible for running Wembley Stadium for the Football Association (FA) – has been appointed to head up under-fire governing body British Cycling.

The new chief executive joins the organisation during a tense period despite a stellar showing by Team GB cyclists during the Rio 2016 Olympic Games, when 15 medals were achieved.

A review of British Cycling’s “climate and culture” is close to its conclusion following allegations of bullying and sexism, while the controversy surrounding a medical parcel delivered to the doctor of Sir Bradley Wiggins during the 2011 Criterium du Dauphine continues raise questions over its governance.

Following an explosive Culture, Media and Sport Committee hearing in which UK Anti-Doping chief executive Nicole Sapstead criticised the record keeping of the body, chair of the committee Damian Collins said its credibility was in “tatters”.

Despite this, Harrington said it was “the right time to be joining one of the country’s leading governing bodies”.

“British Cycling already has a fantastic track record of using elite success to inspire millions of people to get active by getting on their bikes and is now setting its sights in new ambitions and a new way of working,” she added.

Harrington, who has 15 years’ experience in senior sports roles, will replace Ian Drake in May.

She joined the FA in 2011 as managing director of St George’s Park – the body’s £100m (US$122m, €115.5m) training centre in Burton-on-Trent.

Jonathan Browning, the recently-elected chair of British Cycling, said Harrington had the right mix of skills to lead the body during a “period of significant change”.

“I am confident that she will excel in what is a landmark and exciting appointment for British Cycling,” he added.

British Cycling  Football Association  Julie Harrington 
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