NASSAU, Bahamas, April 17 /PRNewswire/ -- The Confederation of North, Central America and Caribbean Association Football (CONCACAF) celebrated today its 30th Ordinary Congress and 21st Extra Ordinary Congress in the Bahamas, confirming President Jeffrey Webb to a second term in office while focusing on continuing reforms that have strengthened the organization. Other members of CONCACAF's Executive Committee were also elected."CONCACAF is—more than ever—united by one vision," said President Webb, who ran unopposed. "We represent our region on the global stage with one strong and cohesive voice. The invisible barriers that have hampered the region's progress for decades are diminishing, and we are seeing unprecedented levels of success both on and off the pitch."
The meeting, which was attended by representatives of all 41 Member Associations, featured dignitaries including FIFA President Joseph Blatter, Bahamas Minister of Tourism Obediah Wilchcombe, as well as candidates to the FIFA Presidency Prince Ali bin Al-Hussein, Luis Figo and Michael van Praag.
"What makes the strength of this Confederation is solidarity and unity," said President Blatter, who said CONCACAF should receive a fourth spot in the upcoming World Cup. "For this remarkable leadership, congratulations to Jeffrey Webb and compliments to Concacaf Executive Committee and Member Associations."
The Congress also confirmed representatives to occupy various positions in CONCACAF and FIFA Executive Committees:
- Jeffrey Webb was re-elected as President of CONCACAF, which confirms his position as FIFA Vice-President the next four years,
- Captain Horace Burrell was re-elected as Vice-President of CONCACAF, Caribbean Zone,
- Justino Compean was re-elected as Vice-President of CONCACAF, North American Zone,
- Pedro Chaluja was elected as CONCACAF Executive Committee Member, Central American Zone,
- Sonia Bien-Aime was elected to occupy the newly created position of Female Member on the CONCACAF Executive Committee,
- Eduardo Li was elected as FIFA Executive Committee Member representing the CONCACAF Central American Zone.
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The Congress was highlighted by reports focusing on CONCACAF's increasing levels of good governance, and financial strength, including:
- Ms. Sonia Bien-Aime, CONCACAF Executive Committee Member, updated the Congress on initiatives in the Grassroots Development of women's football including the youth development, Under-15 Women's Championship, the successful Let's Develop Women's Football Seminar, and the upcoming Women's Football Day.
- The Finance Committee presented its annual report, which reflected growth above projections in the governing body's finances. The Congress also approved the budget for the next four-year cycle.
- Independent auditors BDO were also on hand to present the Congress with the 2014 audit. The Congress voted to continue to retain BDO as the independent auditor.
- The Director of Development gave updates on successful programming carried out in youth development, and initiatives designed to bolster Member Associations across the Confederation in women's and youth football, as well as Beach Soccer.
- The Director of Communications and Marketing highlighted the robust growth of following in the Confederation's social media and marketing initiatives, while introducing the Confederation's CONCACAF TV channel, set to go to market this month.
- The Director of Refereeing reviewed the success of the Confederation's referees on the field, as well as the development and ongoing training of women and young referees.
A general area of focus of the Congress was unity and democracy, as the 41 Member Associations widely voiced support of President Webb's work over the past three years, before unanimously re-electing him to a further term.
"Three years ago, I ran on a platform of unity, development and enhancement, with a promise to advance our sport and unite the region around it. These were lofty goals — and I fully acknowledge, possibly unattainable ones -- without you," said Webb during his speech.
Additionally, the CONCACAF Integrity Committee, an independent panel that has examined the organization's functions, reported that following the release of its Report of Investigation, the Confederation has fulfilled more than 30 recommended reforms promulgated by the Committee.
Through the unanimous approval of its amended Statutes at the Extraordinary Congress, CONCACAF further created the legal framework that will allow for the implementation of the aforementioned recommendations and enforcement of due governance policies.