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Jean-Christophe Rolland


ORGANISATION: World Rowing Federation


Jean-Christophe Rolland has served as President of the World Rowing Federation (FISA) since 2014. At 50 years old, he is one of the youngest International Federation presidents.An Olympic champion in rowing for France, Rolland first became involved in FISA as an athlete when he joined the Athletes’ Commission in 1994 while still competing. He went on to be elected as Chair of the Commission, a position he held for nine years.  

Rolland is also a member of the International Olympic Committee and a member of the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) Foundation Board. He is on the board of the Organising Committee for the Olympic and Paralympic GamesParis 2024. 

Rolland holds a Master's degree in Electrical, Electronics and Communications Engineering. He has worked for EDF, one of the world's leading electric utility companies, since 1993, including four years in London managing EDF’s London Olympic sponsorship programme. 

Having taken up rowing at the age of 12, Rolland competed on the French national team for 14 years. He started as a junior rower, winning bronze at his first world championships, and then went on to participate in three Olympic Games, where he won one bronze and one gold medal. He has graced the Senior World Championship podium five times. 

Sustainability is a key dimension that Rolland has embraced in both his professional activities and sports engagement. He has embraced World Rowing’s Clean Water policy and, as a rower himself, values the fact that outdoorsports rely on the natural environment. Rolland believes that not only should rowing have a limited impact on the environment, but also that the rowing community should actively participate in improving our natural world. 


The speakers

Using the unique power of sport to bring people together, the Olympism in Action Forum sees a range of global players, including Olympic Movement stakeholders, athletes, private and public sector leaders, NGO representatives, academics, artists and the media come together to talk on topical contemporary issues. Chosen because of their ability to effect change and their wide range of sometimes differing opinions, the speakers will lead lively debates and seek to challenge received wisdom to inspire new ways of thinking.

Meet the speakers.
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