The Youth Sport Trust is delighted to announce that John Steele will become its new Chief Executive from 6 February 2012.
John has an extensive career in the sports industry and this experience will greatly enhance the Youth Sport Trust's reputation as the country's leading youth sport charity and achieve its mission to increase PE and school sport opportunities for young people.
He joins at a very exciting time for the Trust which is delivering a number of high profile sporting initiatives including the new School Games, the Government's flagship school sport policy, which is supported by Sport England Lottery money and Sainsbury's.
John, who has led sporting bodies including UK Sport and the Rugby Football Union, said:
"It is an absolute privilege to be appointed Chief Executive of the Youth Sport Trust. I have often looked on with admiration at the work of the Youth Sport Trust and a large part of my motivation for joining the organisation is it's exceptional record of delivery and expertise. I passionately believe that sport has a crucial part to play in the development of young people and I look forward to taking up this new challenge. Leading an organisation which is playing such an important role within this country's sporting landscape is an honour.
"In this, the Olympic and Paralympic year, we simply must ensure that every young person has the opportunity to take part in more PE and sport. We have seen such dramatic improvements in school sport over the last decade and 2012 has to be a catalyst to drive these improvements further.
"Whilst understanding the tough economic position the country is in, if we are to capitalise on this sporting moment it is critical that there is the investment and infrastructure in place to support those young people who are inspired by sport."
Baroness Sue Campbell, who has held the role of Chief Executive since March 2011 and will return to her position as Chair of the Youth Sport Trust, said:
"We are delighted to welcome John to the Youth Sport Trust at what is a truly exciting time for the organisation. John brings a wealth of experience that will be invaluable in supporting us to shape the future of school sport and ensure that every young person has the opportunity to take part, compete, lead and volunteer in sport.
"We have given careful consideration to this position and have been extremely impressed by the strong list of candidates that we received. This reflects the importance that so many rightly put on school sport and the role it has to play in the development of the nation's youth."
Jeremy Darroch, Chief Executive of BSkyB and a Youth Sport Trust board member, said:
"For many years Sky has enjoyed a very successful partnership with the Youth Sport Trust and the appointment of John Steele is welcome news. His knowledge and experience of working in the sporting landscape will be of great benefit to those of us who are working hard to create even more sporting opportunities for young people."
2012 promises to be a very important year for the Youth Sport Trust. The Sainsbury's School Games, which the Youth Sport Trust has been commissioned by Sport England to deliver, will see young people up and down the country taking part in local competitions and regional festivals as well as 1,600 competing in a flagship national event at the Olympic Park in May.
The Youth Sport Trust's partnership with Lloyds TSB for National School Sport Week is growing ever stronger with the week set to be bigger than ever this summer with schools getting the chance to stage their own games and capture the excitement of London 2012. A new addition this year is World Sport Day, taking place on 25 June, the first day of National School Sport Week.
The continued support of the Youth Sport Trust's corporate partners including Bupa, Sky Sports and Matalan ensures that in this special year for sport the Youth Sport Trust is giving as many opportunities as possible for young people to discover the fun and excitement of sport.