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The World DanceSport Federation (WDSF) is pleased to announce the appointment of Sergey Nifontov as General Secretary, effective immediately.
Nifontov’s appointment was approved by the WDSF Presidium during an online meeting on 27 October. The 40-year-old, who speaks Spanish, Russian and English, replaces outgoing General Secretary Guillaume Felli.
“Through hard work, commitment and passion, I look forward to supporting all athletes, contributing to the WDSF, and to all our National Member Bodies,” Nifontov says. “It is a great opportunity and I am honoured for the trust the Presidium has shown in me.”
A Standard and Latin dancer since the age of 5, Nifontov is no stranger to the world of DanceSport. In addition to being a well-respected WDSF Sports Officer in Spain, he is also a WDSF Chairperson and a former WDSF Adjudicator A and PD Adjudicator.
In 2010 he co-founded a course of studies at the Conservatorio Superior de Danza de Alicante that offers the only bachelor’s degree in DanceSport in Spain, and is also well established at the Spanish DanceSport Federation, where he is a Member of the Adjudicators’ Commission and Educational Commission.
He takes over the role at the WDSF at a challenging time, as the federation gradually returns to normal operations after a period of inactivity for DanceSport brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic. But with the global event calendar rapidly filling up again and preparations ongoing for Breaking’s Olympic debut at Paris 2024, Nifontov is confident that the mid- to long-term outlook for DanceSport remains rosy.
“Being absolutely aware of the critical situation in the world and given the fact of the International Olympic Committee’s recognition and the inclusion in the Olympic Summer Games in Paris 2024, I am absolutely positive about the bright future of the WDSF,” he says. “With DanceSport increasingly being in the global spotlight, opportunities for athletes, WDSF and all member bodies will be enormous going forward.
“I look forward to working collaboratively with the IOC and making new connections.”
Nifontov also believes that it will be a positive development to transfer the governance of Para DanceSport Latin & Standard from the International Paralympic Committee (IPC) to WDSF, seek entry for Para DanceSport into the 2028 Paralympic Games in Los Angeles, and to support the inclusion of Breaking at the Olympic Games LA28.
His first order of business as General Secretary will be to attend the IOC’s International Federation Transition Seminar in person in Lausanne, Switzerland on 9-10 November.
Nifontov, who holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Management, adds that he is well-versed on all operational aspects of the WDSF, from the daily operations of the headquarters in Lausanne to Presidium meetings and the Annual General Meeting. He also enjoys a good working relationship with the WDSF President, Vice-Presidents, Managing Committee, Presidium and the Chairs of the different WDSF Commissions.
For these reasons and more, WDSF President Shawn Tay expects Nifontov to hit the ground running.
“I have personally known Sergey for a number of years now and consider him to be a highly capable, trustworthy and passionate administrator who is committed to both progress and unity in the DanceSport community,” President Tay says. “He is eager to contribute and I am confident his previous experience and education will help him excel in the role of General Secretary. I wish him all the very best.”