Five Appointed as Permanent Members of USATT Board
Five Board Members, Including Athlete Representatives Tara Profitt and Niraj Oak, Who Were Serving
In an Interim Capacity Are Selected to a Full Representative Term
(Colorado Springs, CO – June 2, 2020) – USA Table Tennis (“USATT”), the National Governing Body for the sport of table tennis, today announced that five members of the organization’s Interim Board of Directors have now been appointed to serve on the permanent Board.
The permanent Board includes two athlete representatives, Tara Profitt and Niraj Oak, who were appointed by the Athlete Advisory Council. The three independent representatives, Richard Char, Kelly Watson and Sergio Garcia, were appointed by the Nominating and Governance Committee. It was also determined that Mr. Char will remain as Board Chair, a position he has held since his selection to the Interim Board in February.
"Richard, Kelly, and Sergio have been consistent and effective contributors to USATT during their tenure as interim Board Members despite stepping in at a difficult time,” said Han Xiao, the Chair of USATT’s Nominating and Governance Committee. “The Nominating and Governance Committee is pleased to unanimously appoint each of these independent Directors to full terms on the permanent Board and looks forward to assisting the organization in filling the remaining permanent Board seats."
“In the short time I have served on the USATT Board, I have been so impressed with the passion and dedication of everyone: members, staff and athletes,” said Mr. Char. “USATT is a very special organization and each Board member realizes what an honor and responsibility it is to serve. With the help of everyone, we look forward to continuing to move table tennis forward.”
The five-member interim board was installed in February in response to a demand presented by the United States Olympic and Paralympic Committee (USOPC) which required that USATT institute a number of reforms within the structure and governance of the organization. The USOPC demand, which was presented in November of 2019, required the resignation of all nine members of the Board of Directors then serving USATT.
This confirmation of the five permanent Board Members is part of an on-going process to install a full complement of USATT Board members. Originally, the USOPC had requested a new permanent Board be seated by June 2020. By confirming the first five permanent members of the Board, USATT was able to secure an extension from USOPC for the selection of the remaining members in light of the current COVID-19 pandemic. USATT Bylaws provide for a nine (9) member Board, three of whom must meet the standards established for independent representation. At least twenty percent of the Board must be comprised of athlete representatives. The Bylaws also call for a “Club Director,” who represents Member Clubs throughout the US, as well as two “At-Large Directors” who are elected to their posts by the USATT General Membership. There is also one spot reserved for a “National Organization Director.”
Under the USATT Bylaws, the Nominating and Governance Committee (NGC) is vested with a certain degree of discretion in determining and implementing the selection process of certain Board Member seats, which includes the determination of election procedures for the At-Large positions. The process of selecting and electing the full complement of USATT Board Members is currently under review, as the NGC seeks to develop procedures that will ensure a full, fair and transparent opportunity for all who are interested in serving on the USATT Board. These procedures are expected to necessarily take into account the challenges imposed by the COVID-19 pandemic. The NGC is expected to work with the permanent Board in this regard in the coming weeks.
Under USATT Bylaws Board Members are generally selected for terms of four years. However, USATT has previously varied the term lengths for certain director positions in order to create a “staggered” Board and preclude the possibility of a complete change of Board membership at one time. The orderly transition of the Board membership in the future is expected to be a part of the NGC selection and election plan.