Executive Committee

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The administration of the IDBF consists of the Congress and the Council. The Congress is a representation of all Full and Basic members. Because this is too large a group for day to day business, the management is done by the Executive Committee.

Below is the list of members of the council and the executive committee with their email addresses, of course you can also contact the IDBF.

President

Claudio Schermi is a graduate in Economics and Business Administration at the University of Rome. He is an entrepreneur and a coach in the field of sports management, events organization, corporate training and team building.

He is the President of the European Dragon Boat Federation and the President of the International Dragon Boat Federation. He was the founder and President of the Italian Federation of which he is Honorary President.

Claudio Schermi has always been practicing sport, particularly Canoe Kayak, Ocean Racing and Dragon Boating.

He also organized 3 editions of the EDBF European Nations Dragon Boat Championships, as well as one European Club Crews Dragon Boat Championships and the Dragon Boat Club Crews World Championships (CCWC) in 2002 and 2014. The next CCWC will be in Ravenna, Italy in 2024.

Senior Vice President

Has been involved in dragon boating in Hong Kong since 1988 and is the President of Hong Kong China Dragon Boat Association. He was previously part of the Hong Kong National team and also also been part of their management group at World Championships. The Organizing Committee of the successful 12th Club Crew World championship in 2012 was Chaired by him. Among his other responsibilities, he is the Chairman of the Hong Kong water Sport council. 

2nd Vice President

Mathew Smith is a career dragon boater. As the former president of Dragon Boat Canada from 2006 to 2017, he helped build the organization from scratch to one of the IDBF’s most prolific members. He has also coached the Canadian national premier women’s team since 2011, and premier mixed since 2017. On the club level, Matthew runs the 22Dragons dragon boat club, one of Canada’s largest and most successful clubs. He is also involved in the event production side of dragon boating, helping produce 55 community, charity and sport races annually in Canada and the United States.

3rd Vice President

Julie Doyle as a chartered Quantity Surveyor (BSc, MRICS) brings a wealth of commercial and contract knowledge from working with multinational construction companies.

Having started dragon boating back in 1991, Julie was one of the first female helms in the UK and has since gone on to helm and paddle for both the British and Irish Dragon Boat Teams. Following her experience on the British Dragon Boat Racing Association’s Board, Julie founded the Irish Dragon Boat Association in 2010 and has seen the sport grow in Ireland through her roles as Chairman, Event Organiser and a dragon boat Coach.

Julie has served as EDBF Secretary General for 8 years, as well as being an experienced Grade 3 IDBF Race Official officiating at a number of European and World Championships since 1995.

4th Vice President

Nigel Bedford started dragon boating in Sydney, Australia over 20 years ago. In 2008, he helped found Different Strokes, Australia’s first dragon boat club aimed at the LGBTQI+ community. He moved back to UK in 2011 and, in 2015, founded Purple Warriors; a dragon boat club (and a registered charity) for military veterans living with impairments.

In 2017 he was first elected onto IDBF’s Council as chair of the Para Athletes Commission. In that role he led the development of IDBF’s Rules for Paradragon Racing and has always championed the Paradragon cause. In 2024, he was appointed to IDBF’s Executive Committee.

Nigel is a coach, athlete (including representing Great Britain at IDBF World Championships) and race official.

5th Vice President

Li Haigang graduated from the Institute of International Relations of Peking University University and has worked in the Competitive Sports Department of the General Administration of Sport of China for nearly 20 years. He is responsible for the Chinese sports delegation that participates in major international events such as the Summer and Winter Olympics and Asian Games. Li Haigang is also a representative of the Chinese Olympic Committee for the World Games, Sino German Sports Exchange, World University Games, and World Military Games.

He is currently the Deputy Director of the Chinese Leisure Sport Administrative Centre and Head of the Management Department of the Chinese Dragon Boat Association and brings to the IDBF his in depth knowledge and rich experience in sports project management, sports competition organisation, and sports international affairs.

General Secretary

Former team leader of the China Macau Dragon Boat Team back in 2005-2007 World Nations Dragon Boat Championships in Berlin and Sydney. From 2006 onwards, he is the Race Director of the annual Macau International Dragon Boat Races. 

Promoted to the IDBF Level 4 race official in 2009, he served in the IDBF Club Crew and World Nations Championships, World Nations Cup events. At the Asian Dragon Boat Federation’s events, such as Asian Dragon Boat Championships, South Asian Sea Games, East Asian Games, and more, he served as the Chief Race Official, Technical Director, and Race Jury. 

In 2013, he was appointed as an Acting General Secretary and was elected as General Secretary for a four-year term at the 2017 IDBF Members Ordinary Congress in Kunming, China.

Deputy General Secretary

Mr.Yu Hanqiao was a rowing athlete  from 1980 to 1987 and won the champion in the Asian Games 1986. Since 2010, he has been engaged in the development and management of Dragon Boat in China. He has served as jury and technical delegate in many major championships such as IDBF Dragon Boat World Championships and Asian Games Dragon Boat events. He is currently Deputy Secretary-General of the International Dragon Boat Federation, Secretary-General of the Asian Dragon Boat Federation and Vice Presidnet of the Chinese Dragon Boat Association.

Treasurer

Commencing paddling in 1989, she competed in several IDBF World Club Crew and IDBF World Championships for Australia.

With a background in sports management and business, Loretta has been a great contribution to the strategic planning and sustainability of the sport and the federation since 2011. By managing all the accounting and financial reporting, she ensures the IDBF has sound accounting practices and budgeting process.

Deputy Treasurer

Competition & Technical Commission

Began as a competitive paddler and discovered her passion in sport administration and officiating, she has been involved in the sport for over 24 years. Elected as the Chair of the Competition & Technical Committee back in 2015, she collaborates with the Race Officials and IDBF Leadership Team to ensure conduct and fairness for all competitors. 

Marketing & Media Commission

Belinda has twenty years commercial experience in online marketing and communications in transport, energy and banking and finance sectors.

Her portfolio includes IDBF merchandising, sponsorship liaison and co-authored the IDBF 30th Anniversary book – Modern Day Dragon Boat Racing.

One of her key achievements includes producing content and hosting IDBF’s 30th anniversary celebrations via Facebook Live in November 2021 at a time when Covid was a global pandemic.

Belinda is also responsible for the website, social media and digital publications such as Longzhou news.

Belinda’s contributions were recognised at the 18th IDBF Members Ordinary Congress held in early 2022, where her role was formally incorporated into the IDBF Executive Committee. It highlights the IDBF’s focus on marketing and communicating the sport of dragon boating to the world.

Belinda started dragon boating in 2004. She still paddles competitively at local, national and international events. She also coaches corporate teams and has been a team manager for various clubs and national crews. Belinda has been an IDBF Race Official since 2008, obtaining her Level 3 qualification in 2011.

Athlete Commission

An Olympic Silver and Bronze medallist in sprint kayak, and the first women to compete in the Molokai Hoe Outrigger Race, Sue Holloway is very involved in the sport of paddling. Having participated and medaled at numerous World National Championships and Club Crew Championships since 2004 with the Canadian Senior National Team and Galley Girls Club Crew, she represents the dragon boat community as the Chair of the Athlete’s Commission.