BEIJING, May 28 (Xinhua) -- China's former Olympic champion Zhang Hong was appointed chair of the newly-formed International Olympic Committee (IOC) Coordination Commission for the 4th Winter Youth Olympic Games to be held in Gangwon, South Korea in 2024, after the IOC announced its commission composition for 2020 on Thursday.
Zhang, who won China's the first ever speed skating Olympic gold medal for China at Sochi 2014, was elected onto the IOC Athletes' Commission in 2018. She is also a member of the Athletes' Entourage Commission and was a member of the Evaluation Commission for the Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games 2026.
Zhang will head the six-member Coordination Commission, five of whom are women, to support the organization of the first Winter Youth Olympic Games in Asia.
The other female chair that was introduced in the IOC commission for 2020 was Khunying Patama Leeswadtrakul, the first Thai woman to be elected an IOC member. She will assume the chair of the Culture and Olympic Heritage Commission.
The two are part of increasing female participation in the IOC commissions, with a historic high 47.7 percent of positions across the 30 commission now holding by women, more than double that of 2013.
"By increasing female participation in IOC commissions and the number of female chairs on IOC commissions, the IOC is hearing the female voice more and more and ensuring that women and girls can be empowered by using the powerful platform that sport provides to promote gender equality," said IOC President Thomas Bach.
Fostering gender equality was included in the Olympic Agenda 2020, which was unanimously agreed to at the 127th IOC Session in Monaco on the 8th and 9th of December 2014. Enditem