Seiko Hashimoto was appointed as the Tokyo 2020 President.
She accepted the vacant role following the resignation of Yoshirō Mori.
Hashimoto stepped down as Olympics Minister prior to taking up the position as head of the Organising Committee for the Tokyo 2020 Games.
The 56-year-old Olympian, Seiko Hashimoto, is 7 times Olympian. She brought a bronze in speed skating for Japan.
“I will spare no effort for the success of the Tokyo Games,” Hashimoto said.
International Olympic Committee (IOC) President Thomas Bach said appointing a female to lead the Organising Committee sends a very important message in regard to gender equality. Bach further added, Hashimoto is the perfect choice for this position with her Olympics’ experience. She will ensure that the focus in the final months of preparation remains on the athletes’ experience while planning all the necessary COVID-19 countermeasures.
Hashimoto’s seven Olympic Games are a record for a Japanese woman, after her career as a speed skater and a cyclist.
She was best known for speed skating, competing on the ice at four Winter Olympics and winning bronze over 1500 metres in Albertville in 1992.
On the bike, Hashimoto competed at three Summer Olympics without winning a medal.
Towards the end of her sporting career, she moved into politics and, as a member of the ruling Liberal Democratic Party, was appointed Olympics Minister in September 2019 after a cabinet reshuffle.
She has also served as vice-president of the Japanese Olympic Committee, as a Tokyo 2020 Executive Board member and as Chef de Mission for Japan’s team at Rio 2016.