News & Updates

20 February 2021 • General

Stalwart pair recognised with prestigious award

A pair of the country’s most loyal athletics servants have had their efforts recognised by the Oceania Athletics Association (OAA), which has announced Maria Clarke and Alan Stevens as among four recipients of its 2020 Merit Awards.

Clarke and Stevens join Peter Deane (Australia) and Alifereti Cawanibuka (Fiji) in receiving the illustrious honour, which serves to recognise those who have given outstanding service to the sport over a number of years.

“At the December 2020 Council Meeting, the Council unanimously agreed that Maria, Alan, Peter and Alifereti would receive the prestigious award,” said OAA President Robin Sapong Eugenio.

“Based on the OAA Merit Award criteria, all four recipients have made significant contributions to the sport of athletics over a sustained period, not only for their federation but for the Oceania area and internationally.”

All four will receive a badge in recognition of their achievement and will forever be a part of an ever-growing list of exceptional people who have contributed to athletics. With the closure of international borders, Oceania Athletics will arrange for each recipient to receive their award at the next significant athletics event within their respective nations.

The highlights of the nomination forms for Clarke and Stevens are as per below.

Maria Clarke

Maria was a member of the IAAF Legal Commission (formerly Juridical Commission) from 2007 until 2019. Maria’s contribution to the Commission saw her appointed as the Commission Chair in 2015. From 2016 until 2019, Maria chaired the IAAF Governance and Integrity Reform Working Group. Maria has also provided guidance to OAA Athletics, most recently assisting with constitutional changes that were adopted in September 2019. Maria is always willing to share her insights with others and is a fantastic ambassador for our sport.

Alan Stevens

In 1991, Alan was elected as an Oceania Area Representative, and a part of the IAAF Cross County & Road Committee – 16 years continuously to 2007. From 1970 to 1996, Alan was a part of the NZAAA Management Committee and Athletics NZ Board – 26 years in total. From 1977 to 1988, Alan was Convenor for the Cross Country & Road Committee. In 1995, Alan was awarded the IAAF Veteran Pin at World Congress, Goteborg, Sweden.