Nabil Elalem, shown during a television interview, is an International Coaching Enrichment Certificate Program graduate who has been named president of the Libyan National Olympic Committee.

Olympic leadership

UD ICECP graduate elected president of Libyan Olympic Committee

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10:13 a.m., Feb. 10, 2012--Nabil Elalem, a 2008 graduate with honors from the International Coaching Enrichment Certificate Program (ICECP) — sponsored by the U.S. Olympic Committee, the International Olympic Committee’s Olympic Solidarity Department, and the University of Delaware — has been named president of the Libyan National Olympic Committee.  

“Nabil was one of the finest participants we have had in the four years of the ICECP,” stated ICECP Associate Director Jeff Schneider. “His project, a long term athlete development plan for Judo in Libya, has been held up as the gold standard for a project for each class since his graduation.”

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The ICECP is offered to National Olympic Committees (NOCs) worldwide and consists of lectures, guest speakers, participant presentations, group work and field trips spread among four modules, including an apprenticeship with a U.S. national team or college team. Participants receive scholarships from the International Olympic Committee’s Olympic Solidarity Department, and the U.S. Olympic Committee (USOC) provides financial support for the program. 

Formerly, Muammar Gaddafi’s son Mohammad served as president of the Libyan National Olympic Committee. Elalem’s election took place at the NOC General Assembly where Marwarn Maghur, the current secretary general of the Libyan National Olympic, said “a road map for the future” was adopted and “implementation is taking place.” 

Elalem, who also serves as the president of the Libyan Judo Federation, stated, “I am very optimistic and confident that Libyan sport will flourish and develop in the new free Libya.”

Elalem and his team have started restructuring the Libyan NOC, which has 25 sport federations and six technical committees to increase its efficiency. 

“We are already in the process of transforming the committee in order to provide better service to the federation, clubs and sports consuls which control sports programs in Libyan provinces,” Elalem stated.  “Furthermore, we are in the process of establishing new coaching certification and classification programs in order to improve the knowledge and expertise of the local coaches in various sports.” 

Additionally, wrestling and boxing federations, forbidden under the old regime, have been created, Elalem said.

Since the fall of dictator Muammar Gaddafi in October 2011, Libyan athletes have participated under their new flag in the All-African Games, which took place in Maputo, Mozambique, as well as in the Arab Games in Doha, Qatar. Also, the Libyan Soccer team qualified for the African Cup of Nations final in 2012 even though they played only one match out of six at home during the qualification rounds.

Elalem said he considers his affiliation with UD and USOC a plus and hopes that in the future there will be many more opportunities for the Libyan NOC to work with their colleagues at the University of Delaware and the USOC.

“We are very proud of Nabil and we wish him all the best in his new role and are prepared to assist in any way we can,” stated UD ICECP Director Matthew Robinson. “Nabil is an accomplished professional with a passion for sport and a passion for his country. He should also know that he has over 100 ICECP graduates from over 70 countries wishing him only the best in his efforts and are willing to lend a helping hand. That is the beauty of the Olympic movement.” 

Article by Fariba Amini

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