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Games Director appointed for Special Olympics National Games

03 July 2017

Games Director appointed for Special Olympics National Games

Special Olympics New Zealand is pleased to announce the appointment of Jessica Baldwin to the role of Games Director for the Special Olympics New Zealand National Summer Games 2017. The Games will be New Zealand’s largest sporting event for athletes with intellectual disabilities, and will be held in Wellington in November.

Jessica has worked on a number of high profile international sporting events, including the World Masters Games, the 1st European Games, and the London Olympics in 2012. Most recently she was Head of Sport for the Islamic Solidarity Games in Baku, Azerbaijan, which saw 3000 athletes competing across 20 sports.

Having worked for Special Olympics New Zealand as a Regional Sports Coordinator from 2009-2011, Jessica is looking forward to returning to the organisation.

“I’m excited about delivering a successful event that is enjoyed by everyone and creates long lasting memories,” Jessica says. “I hope the athletes enjoy everything the Games has to offer, compete at their best, and save some energy for the disco!”

Special Olympics New Zealand Chief Executive Kathy Gibson said the organisation is thrilled to have Jessica back on board and are looking forward to the expertise she will bring to the Games.

“To have someone on board with such significant experience in delivering world-class sporting events, who also understand our organisation and our athletes is just amazing,” Ms Gibson says.

“We are looking forward to putting on amazing events for all of our athletes and supporters.”

The National Summer Games are being held in Wellington from 27 November to 1 December 2017. More than 1300 athletes from Special Olympics New Zealand’s 44 local Clubs will gather to compete in swimming, athletics, basketball, bocce, equestrian, football, golf, indoor bowls, powerlifting, and tenpin bowling, supported by over 1000 volunteers.

Special Olympics New Zealand will also run a Healthy Athletes Programme during the Games delivered by more 70 volunteer clinicians. Athletes will be offered the opportunity to take part in screenings focused on hearing, eye sight, dental care and podiatry.


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