By Ron Jackson
Howard Goldberg from Cape Town, South Africa, has been appointed president of the restructured World Boxing Federation. His election followed a meeting in Dessau, Germany, on the eve of Francois Botha’s defence of his World Boxing Foundation heavyweight title against Cuban Pedro Carrion. Prominent and influential boxing administrators met with Goldberg, a former world title referee and judge, to discuss changes in the Federation.
The feeling was that while Mick Croucher, as president of the World Boxing Foundation, had done well, they had reached a crisis point. To move the organisation to a higher level, it was felt, the Federation needed a new leader with vision and experience.
All the Foundation champions were invited to simply move over to the new Federation. They have done so without hesitation.
The new structure of the Federation saw Goldberg assuming the role of president.
The vice-presidents are Ron Scalf of the US and Matteo Fratini of Italy. The other executive members are Olaf Schroder and Jean Marcel Nartz, both of Germany.
Yli Ndroqi of Albania will serve as an honorary non-executive vice-president.
Goldberg, who has degrees in education, as well as an MBA, believes the new Federation will be a major boost for SA boxing.
“The new World Boxing Federation commits itself to helping South African boxing grow, and will provide numerous opportunities for boxers, trainers, officials and even administrators,” he said.
“The Federation is already in the process of setting up its first convention, which will be held in Albania in the first quarter of 2010.
“We have also secured half a dozen world title fights around the world since our meeting in Germany.”
Goldberg would not reveal much about Botha’s next defence of his Federation belt, but hinted that his opponent could be a former world heavyweight champion.
The fight may take place somewhere in Africa.