Speakers and panelists
General Manager and Co-Founder of Sport’Aide, Canada
Sylvain is General Manager and Co-Founder of Sport’Aide, Canada. Sylvain is a communications and public affairs specialist and involved in amateur sport for many years. He also worked in professional sports, with the Québec Nordiques (National Hockey League). He is the parent of 3 young athletes.
Professor Emerita, Department of Social and Cultural Studies, Norwegian School of Sport Sciences
Kari Fasting is a Professor Emerita at the Department of Social and Cultural Studies at the Norwegian School of Sport Sciences in Oslo, Norway. She was the first female professor in sport science in the Nordic Countries (1987) and the first elected chair (rector) at the Norwegian school of sports sciences. She is past president and honorary member of the International Sociology of Sport Association, and one of the founding members of WomenSport International (WSI), and recently of Safe Sport International (SSI).
Her research has been concerned with various aspects related to “equality and diversity” in sport, with a focus on sport and exercise in the lives of girls and women. For the past 30 years, her research has been centered on sexual harassment and abuse in sport. She has also worked as an expert consultant for major organisations in this area, including: the International Olympic Committee, the Norwegian Olympic, Paralympic and Confederation of Sports (NIF), the Czech Olympic Committee, UNICEF, EU and the Council of Europe.
For the time being she is involved in the "All IN: Towards gender balance in sport Project", and the I-Protect Project (The development of a European online Platform for the Protecting of Children in Sport).
Department of Social Sciences, Edge Hill University (Lancashire, UK)
Mike is Reader in the Sociology of Sport in the Department of Social Sciences at Edge Hill University (Lancashire, UK). He has been researching child sexual exploitation and abuse in sport for over 15 years and established some of the first undergraduate modules on child protection in sport in 2003.
Mike has undertaken life-history research with men and women who were subjected to sexual violence within sport settings. He also conducted some of the first research evaluations on policy and procedures for child protection in sport.
In 2015, Mike initiated the European project ‘Voices for truth and dignity’, extending research with ‘survivors’ of abuse in sport across seven European countries. Currently, he is acting as a special advisor to the English Football Association’s independent review into allegations of child sexual abuse in football as well as leading a new EU-funded project, CASES (Child Abuse in Sport: European Statistics) which aims to establish prevalence rates of sexual violence against children in European sport.
Mike has also recently established a new research centre at Edge Hill that will provide high-quality evidence to support the development of policy, practice and education in the field of child protection, safeguarding and athlete welfare.
Contact: [email protected]
Detective Chief Inspector, Helsinki Police Department
Pekka is a detective chief inspector with the Helsinki police department and the investigation lead in crimes against children, domestic violence and hate crimes. He has worked in the police for over ten years as a field officer and a detective, as well as a senior officer in the Ministry of Interior and the Non-Discrimination Ombudsman.
He has a degree in policing and is a Master of Law from the Helsinki university with court training from the District Court of Helsinki. He’s also the father of a four year old football player.
Committee member, ENGSO Youth
Gerda Katschinka lives in Austria, Vienna. She is working as a project co-ordinator in health-related fitness and grassroots sports at the national agency of the General Sports Association of Austria (ASVÖ). She studied Sports Sciences with specialization in Sport Management at the University of Vienna. Additionally, she finished a Master in Sports Sciences with specialization in Exercise and Health at the University of Orléans in France.
In the sector of youth sports Gerda Katschinka was a volunteer at the FICEP Games 2008 and the Youth Olympic Winter Games 2012. Since 2015 she has been involved in ENGSO Youth (European Non-Governmental Sports Organisation) as a committee member. Since 2016 she has been the chair of the Austrian Sports Organizations Youth Committee where she had been involved for more than 3 years.
Her engagement in the protection against sexualized violence and gender harassment in sports started with the project “Sport respects your rights” funded by the Daphne III Programme 2011/2012 of the European Union and was continued in the Erasmus+ Project “Voices for truth and dignity – combatting sexual violence in European Sport through the voices of those affected” on European level.
M. Soc. Sc., Director, Division for Sport, Ministry of Education and Culture, Finland
Tiina Kivisaari is Director of the Division for Sport of the Finnish Ministry of Education and Culture.
She has been working as a Secretary General of Finnish Paralympic Committee and Social Responsibility Manager at Finnish Association on Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities. During her almost 15 years at the Finnish Parliament as Special Adviser to the Speaker of the Parliament and Deputy Chief of Communication, Researcher and EU Information Officer, she gained thorough and diverse expertise on legislation and legislative procedures. Mrs Kivisaari has also been a member of several non-governmental boards, including the National Olympic Committee and Finnish Swimming Federation. She is vice-chair of the Finnish Board of Sport Ethics and an active Member of the Board at the Finnish Association for Substance Abuse Prevention and at the Sosped Foundation.
Senior Lecturer in Sport Pedagogy, University of Jyväskylä
Marja Kokkonen (PhD in Psychology, M.Sc in Sport Sciences) works as a Senior Lecturer in Sport Pedagogy in the faculty of sport and health sciences at the University of Jyväskylä, Finland. In the domains of personality and developmental psychology, and sport and exercise psychology, she has been interested in the linkages between discrimination based on gender and sexual orientation and psychological and physical well-being.
In 2015 – 2016, she was the national principal investigator in a project called “Innovative learning resources to foster equal participation in grassroots sports dealing with discrimination, racism and violence incidents” (IRIS) that was carried out in the framework of ERASMUS+ EU Program and co-funded by the EU. She is currently a principal investigator in a research project PREACT that tackles discrimination in sport and physical education, co-funded by the Finnish Ministry of Education and Culture between 2018 - 2021.
Marja has been a Fulbright Research Fellow at Yale University (USA), and a visiting scholar at Queensland University of Technology (Brisbane, Australia), and at Nanyang Technological University (NTU/PESS) in Singapore. She has also conducted corporate training and/or taught various audiences in Finland, UK, USA, the NL, Switzerland, Czech Republic, Tanzania and India in industries such as higher education, information technology, banking, forest industry, management, sport management, coach education and health care, often combined with interactive and/or dance-movement therapeutic methods. As a licensed psychologist with an additional certificate in sport and exercise psychology, she has been involved in coach education since 2005, and is currently involved with the Finnish Athletics Association. Marja is a former Treasurer and a Managing Council member of European Federation of Sport Psychology (FEPSAC), and a member of the Botín Platform for Innovation in Education in the Marcelino Botin Foundation in Santander, Spain.
Liri Kopaçi-Di Michele
Executive Secretary, Council of Europe Convention on Preventing and Combating Violence against Women and Domestic Violence
Liri Kopaçi-Di Michele is Head of Violence against Women Division and Executive Secretary of the monitoring mechanisms of the Council of Europe Convention on Preventing and Combating Violence against Women and Domestic Violence (Istanbul Convention).
Her experience at the Council of Europe includes the development, promotion and implementation of Council of Europe standards, programmes and activities in the area of gender equality and women’s rights as well as advisory functions in the Private Office of the President of the Parliamentary Assembly and the Private Office of the Secretary and Deputy Secretary General of the Council of Europe.
Ms Kopaçi-Di Michele graduated with an MSc. in Management from the University of Surrey in England and a BA in English Language from the University of Tirana in Albania.
Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Education and Culture
Ms Anita Lehikoinen was appointed Permanent Secretary of Ministry of Education and Culture on 1 May 2013. She is head of operations of the Ministry in cooperation with the Ministers and leads the implementation of the Government programme within the Ministry´s administrative sector. She supervises the internal functions of the Ministry and plays a significant role in preparing the Ministry to respond to future challenges.
Anita Lehikoinen has been employed with the Finnish Ministry of Education since 1989. Prior to her current position, she served as Director General in the Ministry, in charge of higher education and science policy development. She has also worked in the field of higher education, and was responsible for the implementation of the Bologna process in Finland and internationalisation strategy for higher education, among other things. She has also been involved in work to reform the steering system of Finnish universities. Ms Lehikoinen has served in many national and European committees in the field of higher education, research and internationalisation.
Ms Lehikoinen holds an M.A. degree from the University of Helsinki (1987).
CFO, Finnish Ice Hockey Association
Jaakko Luumi works as CFO in Finnish Ice Hockey Association, and he has previously worked over ten years in Big 4 audit firm as certified public accountant.
Jaakko is one of the main developers of the You are not alone -helpline, which has been developed to prevent and decrease inappropriate behaviour in sports in Finland.
Baroness (Doreen E Massey) of Darwen
Member, Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe
Baroness (Doreen E Massey) of Darwen has a BA degree in French (Honours) from Birmingham University and Aix-en-Provence and a Diploma in Education. She holds an MA in Health Education from London University and a Diploma in Counselling to Individuals, Groups and Organisations from the Tavistock Institute. She holds an Honorary Doctorate in Health Education at the University of Birmingham and a Fellowship at the University of Central Lancashire. She is Honorary Professor of Sociology at the University of Nottingham Trent. She speaks regularly at conferences and seminars concerned with children’s rights and welfare and visits schools and Universities to carry out political education with students.
She became a member of the British delegation to the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe in 2016. In 2017-2018 she chaired the Sub Committee for Children, within the Committee for Social Affairs, Health and Sustainable Development. She is an observer to the Lanzarote Committee (violence against children) and the Ad Hoc Committee for the Rights of the Child.
She is patron of several charities for young people and women’s rights. These include Brook Advisory Centres for young people’s sexual health, Women and Children First, the Maya centre for women victims of violence, the Child Trafficking Unit at Bedfordshire University, the Amos Bursary, which helps black boys to achieve, and the Lady Taverners, a cricket charity which raises funds for disabled young people to do sport. She is a member of the Royal Society of Arts, a Patron of the British Humanist Association and the National Secular Society.
She is involved with the following All Party Groups in Parliament: children, breast cancer, cricket (Vice Chair), reproductive health and has recently founded the All Party Group for Young People’s Health.
Head of the Children’s Rights and Sport Values Department, Council of Europe
Elda Moreno is the Head of Children’s Rights and Sport Values Department at the Council of Europe. She is responsible for the European programmes for the protection of children’s rights, the promotion of human rights in and through sports and the fight against doping, match fixing and violence in sport.
Preventing and fighting sexual violence against children is one of the priorities of the Council of Europe, in particular by promoting the implementation of the Lanzarote Convention on the protection of children against sexual exploitation and sexual abuse. Through the “Start to talk” initiative promoted by Elda Moreno, the Council of Europe’s agreement on sport (EPAS) brings its standards to the sport’s field to prevent child abuse, protect and empower children and fight impunity.
From April 2014 to October 2016, Elda Moreno was the Director of the Office of the Special Representative of the United Nations Secretary General on Violence against Children in NY. During this period, Elda Moreno designed the Initiative “High Time to End Violence against children” launched in 2016.
Between 2006 and 2011, Elda Moreno designed and coordinated the Council of Europe transversal Programme “Building a Europe for and with Children”. She was responsible for the development of several children’s rights standards in the fields of justice, health, social services and child participation as well as of two major campaigns. During her career in the Council of Europe, she has also supervised the teams responsible for the fight against trafficking in human beings and the elimination of violence against women. In the field of Gender Equality, she developed the gender equality transversal programme and prepared the first Council of Europe Strategy in this field.
During her six years as member of the Private Office, she advised the Secretary General and the Deputy Secretary General on issues related to the protection of human rights and children’s rights, gender equality, the information society, migration and the fight against violence. She has served under three different Secretaries-General and adviced the current Secretary General (T. Jagland) in the reform of the Organisation.
Before joining the Council of Europe in 1995, Elda Moreno was an attorney in Spain specialised in human rights.
Elda Moreno was born in Cartagena (Spain) and holds a law degree and several master degrees in European and Environmental law. She is based in Strasbourg (France) and speaks Spanish, English, French and German.
Chairperson of the Lanzarote Committee, Psychiatrist
He currently works as a Research Director of the Department of Mental Health and Social Welfare, Institute of Child Health, also Scientific Coordinator of a therapeutic Day Center of the NGO “The Smile of the Child” for children-victims of abuse and neglect. He does research in Child Abuse, Child Protection, Personality Psychology, Health Psychology and Abnormal Psychology as well as Public Health and Epidemiology. He has coordinated several national and international research, intervention, clinical services provision, social policy design, awareness raising and professionals’ training projects on protecting victimized children in various contexts. Mr Nikolaidis was elected as Chairperson of the Lanzarote Committee of the Council of Europe on the protection of children against sexual Exploitation and Sexual Abuse.
Integrity and Gender Equality Officer, Sport Unit, European Commission
Paola works as integrity and gender equality officer for the sport unit of the European Commission, falling under the Directorate General for Education, Youth, Sport and Culture. She follows all EU development in these fields and ensures the secretariat of the Expert Group on Integrity under the current EU Work Plan for Sport.
Paola has a strong background in communication, having spent several years working in digital communication at the European Commission, and is still actively involved in this field, for example within the team working on the European Week of Sport. She started her career in academia, as a researcher lecturing in international relations and holds a PhD in European Studies from the University of Pavia.
Håvard B. Øvregård
Norwegian Olympic and Paralympic Committee and Confederation of Sports
Adviser, responsible for work against sexual harassment and abuse, The Norwegian Olympic and Paralympic Committee and Confederation of Sports, Norway
Since 2011, I’ve been responsible for the work against sexual harassment and abuse in Norwegian sport, as staff member in The Norwegian Olympic and Paralympic Committee and Confederation of Sports (NIF).
Previous to this, from 2007, I was responsible for NIFs work against homophobia (LGBT-related policies), and was also a member of the working-group that developed the (revised) guidelines to prevent sexual harassment and abuse in sport in Norway.
My daily work would include giving advice to sport clubs, athletes, federations, parents, and others, in cases relating to sexual harassment and abuse, as well as to develop the organisations policies and procedures in handling cases concerning sexual harassment and abuse.
Deputy Director, EU Office of the European Olympic Committees
Heidi Pekkola is Deputy Director at the EU Office of European Olympic Committees (EOC EU Office) in Brussels. The EOC EU Office is the representation of the European Olympic Committees (EOC) to the European institutions. It represents furthermore the interests of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) and other major sport organisations at national, European and international level.
Before her current position, Heidi worked as Policy Director at the European Non-Governmental Sports Organisation (ENGSO). She has strong expertise in European sports policy for over 10 years and over the years, she has been involved in many activities, projects, seminars and conferences addressing gender equality in sport. For instance, she led the SCORE (Strengthening Coaching with the Objective to Raise Equality) Project of ENGSO on gender equality in coaching in 2015-2016, which was selected as Erasmus+ success story in 2017.
Heidi holds a Master’s degree in Social Sciences (Political Science as a major) from the University of Helsinki. She is a passionate sportswoman and a European Champion in ultimate frisbee (2007).
Co-founder of the Belgian Voices in Sport Foundation
Tineke Sonck, born in Belgium in 1983, has a Master of Science in Communication Sciences (Vrije Universiteit Brussel). Immediately after her studies she started as spokesperson for the Flemish Minister of Sports and Youth, Bert Anciaux, who helped introduce the Panathlon Declaration Ethics in Youth Sport. After the elections of 2009 she was given the opportunity to start as Flemish spokesperson for Paul Magnette, firstly as Belgian Minister and after as Chairman of the Walloon Socialist Party and mayor of Charleroi. She is still part of his communication team preparing the 2019 elections.
At the age of 4 she started doing gymnastics, something that would quickly take over a big part of her childhood. She was 10 years old when she was practising over 20 hours per week and was part of the national Belgian team. She was sexualy abused by one of the coaches between the age of 7 and 13. She is now using that experience to help other victims step forward and speak out to change something in policy to create a safe sports environment for our children. She participated in the European VOICE-project and is one of the co-founders of the Belgian Voices in Sport Foundation, which represents survivors of sexual abuse in sports. They aim to become a firm voice in the public debate and help put in place campaigns to raise awareness and prevention.
Member, IOC Athletes Commission
Emma Terho is a five time Olympian in ice-hockey. She became the youngest ever Olympic medallist for Finland when capturing a bronze medal during the Nagano 1998 Olympic Games at the age of 16. Emma is a former captain of the Finnish Women’s National Team has also played in the US and in Russia. She is an all-american and her jersey is the first that is retired in the history of Ohio State University Women’s hockey. Emma is also the first ever female to become a board member in Finnish Ice Hockey Federation and in Peyongchang 2018 she was voted by her peers to become a member of the IOC Athletes Commission. Outside sports Emma has a Master’s degree in Finance and is a mother of two.