Jan Fransoo today concluded an extraordinary 20-year term as International Korfball Federation (IKF) President. Fransoo has been succeeded by Gabi Kool who was voted in as the new President of the International Korfball Federation during the General Meeting 2023.
At the IKF General Meeting held on Saturday, 28 October in Taipei City, Jan received multiple standing ovations as well as a moving tribute by IKF CEO and General Secretary, Joana Faria.
The IKF General Meeting awarded Jan Fransoo with the Honorary Life President award for his outstanding contributions to the sport.
Joana said to the General Meeting and IKF officials that had gathered in the conference hall: “It is an honour to stand before you today and pay tribute to Jan Fransoo, the President of the International Korfball Federation, for his twenty years of service and unwavering commitment to the sport of korfball.
“Under his leadership, the sport has grown and flourished to become a truly global organisation. Today, we gather not only to acknowledge his outstanding contributions to our beloved sport but also to celebrate his leadership, vision, and unwavering dedication to the IKF
“The growth of continents outside of Europe, the professional presentation of our sport and the increased exposure through different media channels has been a big factor in this global growth of our sport.
“But Jan’s impact goes beyond the numbers and statistics. It is in the countless lives he has touched, the inspiration he has provided, and the sense of belonging he has nurtured. He has not just been a President; he has been a mentor, a role model, and a friend to many within the korfball community.
“Over the past two decades, Jan has demonstrated an exceptional ability to unite people from all corners of the globe under the banner of korfball. His passion for the growth of our sport has paved the way for countless countries to play korfball both at grass roots, and international level. His dedication to promoting diversity and inclusion has made korfball a sport that welcomes people of all backgrounds, cultures, and abilities. Jan’s commitment to fostering a sense of belonging in our korfball community is truly commendable.
“Under Jan’s guidance, the IKF has successfully hosted increasingly bigger and more professional tournaments such as World Championships and World Games events, showcasing our sport on the world stage in a way that korfball had previously never been seen. His determination to push the boundaries of the sport has resulted in increased recognition and respect for korfball across a variety of international sporting circles.
“Jan has been actively involved in promoting korfball development programs, supporting new technology initiatives, and advocating for gender equity within the sport. His commitment to equality has set a shining example for many others to follow. By promoting mixed-gender teams and equal opportunities for athletes all over the world, Jan has made the sport more inclusive and inspiring for us all.
“Thank you for your dedication, your passion, and your unwavering commitment to the sport of korfball.”
Mr. Shih-Chung, Director of Sports Administration, Ministry of Education also attended the meeting and thanked Jan for his years of dedicated service to the sport, and presented a First Class Medal for Contributions to the Field of Education. Jan was also presented with an Award Certificate and a special gift for his outstanding contribution to developing and expanding the international sport exchanges of Chinese Taipei.
Both the Royal Dutch Korfball Association (KNKV) and the Royal Belgian Korfball Federation (KBKB) awarded Jan Fransoo an Honorary Membership.
Netherlands captain, Daan Preuninger presented a gift to Jan Fransoo on behalf of the KNKV and all athletes both past and present.
Fransoo continues to serve on the International World Games Association Executive (IWGA) Committee. He is serving his second term as IWGA ExCo Member after being reelected in 2023.
His contributions to the sport of korfball are immense and he will be remembered for his dedication and service to the sport. Thank you, Jan.,
Photos: Krit Suttipithuk