The Puerto Rico Olympic Committee has it’s the first female president… Her name: Sara Rosario Velez.
Rosario Velez will replace former fencing star David Bernier, who stepped down three weeks ago after being appointed secretary of state in the administration of Governor-elect Alejandro Garcia Padilla.
“I’m pleased and very happy to be chosen as the first woman president of the Puerto Rico Olympic Committee. All my life I’ve worked for the Olympics,” said Rosario Velez in a statement. “Being president of the Olympic Committee was never a goal of mine, but the chance came along and I took it.”
Rosario Velez said the 42 sports federations under Copur and their directors will have to work with her “as a team” and not as “separate federations” with a view to the 2014 Central American and Caribbean Games in Veracruz, Mexico.
She also said that while wrestler Jaime Espinal and 400-meter hurdler Javier Culson won silver and bronze medals, respectively, at the 2012 London Games, the goal of Copur will be to bring home the first gold medal for the U.S. commonwealth.
“The bronze and silver medals are great, and we’re looking for more athletes like Javier Culson and Jaime Espinal. We’re going to Rio (de Janeiro) 2016 to get that gold medal everyone dreams of,” she said.
Rosario Velez will officially assume her new post on December 13 at Casa Olimpica in Old San Juan.