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Challenges on Road to Rio

An international expert in sports law gave a talk on governance challenges ahead of the 2016 Olympics in Rio at the University of Ulster.

Andy Gray, Director of Regulatory and Legal Affairs, British Swimming/Amateur Swimming Association and Head of Sports Law Unit, Leicester De Montfort Law School, gave a talk on the role of law in the governance and regulation of sport.

He set out the regulatory issues that need to be addressed to ensure that the governance of British Swimming and the Amateur Swimming Association is fit for purpose to meet a new broader role and challenges, and, most importantly, to improve the medal prospects for Rio.

Professor Marie Murphy, Head of the Ulster Sports Academy welcomed Andy to the Jordanstown campus for the first in this year’s public seminar series.

The seminar was organised by the University of Ulster’s Sport and Exercise Sciences Research Institute, Ulster Sports Academy
and the Law and Society Research Group.

Professor Murphy said: “We have been collaborating with the School of Law on the possibility of working with local sports law practitioners to offer educational modules in the expanding area of sport and the law. Andy's lecture and the discussions leading up to his visit will hopefully be a springboard to future developments in this area."

The School of Law’s Gráinne McKeever, co-ordinator of the Law and Society Research Group, said: “This stimulating lecture provided a key insight into the challenges facing sports governing bodies.

“The opportunities for lawyers, and law students, to engage in this dynamic and growing area of governance is one that is welcomed by the School of Law and the Law and Society Research Group.

“We look forward to continuing this productive relationship with the Ulster Sports Academy and the Sport and Exercise Science Research Institute, and with Andy Gray, our external speaker.”

Mr Gray is the in-house counsel to the national governing bodies for British and English Swimming since 1996. He advises on a broad range of commercial, disciplinary and regulatory issues with both a national and international dimension, with a particular interest in sports governance, athlete relationship management and sporting integrity.

More recently as a member of the Senior Executive Team of British Swimming he has assumed responsibility for management of the Human Resources function with particular emphasis on driving a Culture Change agenda to develop the sport Post-Olympics 2012.

Mr Gray is involved in design and delivery of the LLM in Sports Law and Practice (by distance learning) programme at Leicester De Montfort Law School and the Postgraduate Certificate in Sports law presented by DMU in partnership with the British Association for Sport and the Law (BASL).