Boyce puts Presidency in perspective
– looks to second, final term
By Edison Jefford
The Athletics Association of Guyana (AAG) will hold its Annual General Meeting and Election of Office Bearers on Sunday, and as such current President, Colin Boyce, who is expected to run for his final term, placed the future in perspective in a recent interview.
Boyce, after lifting athletics out of dormancy during his first term as President of the AAG which started in 2009, made it clear that his intention was to change how the sport was administered in Guyana and as such, he will only
be serving two terms at the helm.
He made it clear when he came to office that he does not intend to follow the trend of none of his predecessors at the top of the organisation. He believes he has done what he came to office to do, and as a result, Sunday will mark the beginning of his final term.
“I would want to say that I would have achieved most of my goals that I set out for the very first term of my Presidency,” he noted, adding that the push for a synthetic facility, corporate support the sport and international exposure of athletes were high on his agenda.
Satisfactorily Boyce was able to accomplish those feats with Guyana participating in most, if not all, regional and international competition and the introduction of new meets that are corporately oriented to benefit athletes and clubs across the board.
He said that his initiative to ensure that Guyana is properly represented overseas paid off with the extremely talented US based Kadecia Baird winning silver at the World Junior Championships in Italy last year. In addition, he believes Guyana’s bronze medal at the CARIFTA Games, and two bronze medals at the South American Juniors were also positive results.
“Internationally, we have done well, we have won some medals at the South American Under-23 Championships, CARIFTA and ALBA Games, but the brightest spot was when Kadecia (Baird) won Guyana’s first World Junior medal while also making the Olympic qualifying time,” Boyce said.
Conversely, he identified Tevin Garraway not being able to compete at South American’s Youth Championship and Jevina Straker not going to the U-23 Championships because of some issues related to funding as “unfortunate” last year. However, he did say that he will continue to ensure that Guyana’s best talents are exposed providing the standards are met.
Against the background of such a robust and active first tenure, Boyce placed the second term in perspective when he said that he will work to ensure that athletics continue to progress because it is “in his blood”. He indicated that his desire comes from being able to prevent the pitfalls during his career as an athlete for others now that he is President.
“People will have their own perspectives on how things should be, but what I can say is that I am keeping an open mind (as it relates to the future). If I am re-elected I would not run for another term after 2016, but if I’m not I will wish them well and do my best to ensure the progress of the sport because track and field is in my blood,” Boyce pointed out.
But in terms of administration, he said he will be working feverishly in a second term to develop what he hopes will become a culture for the sport locally. According to Boyce, there will always be change, but the sport will remain, which means that it is time coaches begin to ensure athletes understand that they are not bigger than the sport.
“I think it’s time we move past athletics of the past where Coaches want to make athletes feel as though they are bigger than the sport for whatever reason and because of my guidelines some of these Coaches are afraid of change, but change is inevitable,” he said.
Boyce informed that the AAG is currently in talks with the Guyana Olympic Association (GOA) President, K. A Juman Yassin to identify the possibilities of training stints for Guyana’s leading athletes ahead of the 2016 Olympic Games in Brazil.
“It is something we are discussing, and with the help of the Government, who have indicated that they want to walk the walk along with corporate Guyana, we can be successful in preparing them for 2016,” Boyce believes.
He said that he will be implementing a rule that ensures that all overseas-based athletes aiming to represent Guyana must compete at National Trials here; he believes the rule becomes much more necessary given the advent of the synthetic facility. Generally, Boyce is of the view that a second term would set new standards for the sport, athletes and the association.