Stéphane Desprez, former Competition Director of the 2008 Rugby World Cup in France, has been appointed as the new Secretary General of the FAI – the World Air Sports Federation. He will formally take up his appointment in Lausanne, Switzerland, on 1st February 2010. Following the announcement some months ago of the impending retirement of Max Bishop, Secretary General since 1993, an executive search agency was appointed to find a person capable of taking the FAI forward to the next stage of its development. The Executive Board then decided unanimously to select Stéphane Desprez as the new FAI Secretary General from the candidates proposed by the search agency and the FAI selection panel. On learning of the appointment, Stéphane Desprez said: “I am very pleased to be taking over this key post in an International Federation that has such exciting potential, as well as a glorious history. I hope to bring to air sports the many lessons I learned in running one of the world’s major sporting events. I really believe we are set for take-off !” Pierre Portmann, FAI President, commented: “We have come far in recent years, and with the appointment of Stéphane Desprez, FAI is now poised to make another major step forward in bringing air sports to the public eye.” The FAI Executive Board looks forward to working with Stéphane Desprez to promote air sports throughout the world and further strengthen the FAI’s public profile in the sporting and aviation communities.