One of Britain’s most respected and instantly recognisable athletes Ambassador to TEAM GB 2012 Duncan Goodhew. At the age of ten Duncan lost all his hair as a result of falling from a tree. Being bald and also dyslexic, the young Duncan considered himself a “stupid oddity”. Demonstrating an aptitude for swimming, he soon realised that sport could rebuild his self-esteem. By the age of 15 he was intent on becoming the best swimmer in the world – an ambition that took him to the 1980 Moscow Olympic Games where he won an Olympic gold medal.
After retiring from competitive swimming, he was selected by the British Bobsleigh Association to represent Great Britain at the 1981 European Championships in the 2 and 4 Man Bobsleigh.
Currently, Duncan has extensive and diverse business interests and also fronts many media and promotional campaigns. His award winning company, Limelight Projects www.limelightsports.com, is a market leader and is behind the creative delivery of many of the largest and most successful mass participation events and programmes – this year winning the coveted Sports Agency of the Year. Duncan is also a Director of Premier Sport www.premiersport.org the UK’s largest sports coaching company which is delivering high quality sport and PE to over 150,000 children a week.
It is Duncan’s ability to communicate and motivate which has placed him in high demand as a conference speaker for leading companies such as; American Express, Coutts Bank, IBM, Microsoft, Ford Motors, PWC, KP, United Artists, Barclays Bank, Prudential and British Gas. Duncan’s positive thinking programme, which incorporates his account of how he scaled his “personal Everest”, has encouraged dedication and perseverance amongst the company executives and workforces to whom he has spoken.
As well as his commercial activities, Duncan supports various charities. He is President of Swimathon www.swimathon.org whose swimmers have raised in excess of £34 million for charity, co-founded and Vice President Youth Sport Trust www.youthsporttrust.org and is Chairman of the Millfield Foundation.
Some career highlights:
- 1976 Montreal Olympic Games – 7th 100m Breaststroke
- 1975-79 BA Business Management at NC State University
- 1978-1980 GB and England Swimming Team Captain
- 1980 Moscow Olympic Games – Gold 100m, 6th 200m Breaststroke and Bronze in the 4x100m Medley Relay
- 1981 represented GB in the 2 and 4 Man Bobsleigh at the European Championships
- 1981 was presented an MBE by the Queen for services to sport
- 1982 one of the founding directors of the Sports Aid Trust now SportAid
- 1983 Director of Athole Still International Management
- 1987 launched and became President of Swimathon
- 1988 a founding Director of the first American style gym, The Barbican Health and Fitness PLC, in the UK
- 1988 member of the Governmental Review of Sport for the Disabled
- 1994 formed the Youth Sport Trust
- 2001 Royal Humane Society Award
- 2002 publication of ‘Sink or Swim’
- 2004 regular contributor to the Financial Times
- 2005 member of the Independent Sports Review
- 2006 Ambassador for London 2012
- 2006 spearheading Every Day Swim
- 2007 launching Premier Sport PLC
- 2008 honoured by the hosting of the World Swimming SC Championships in the “Duncan Goodhew Aquatic Centre” Manchester
- 2008 One of UK’s top six Olympians selected to be on a lotto scratch card raising funds for 2012
- 2008 Torch bearer for the 2008 Olympic Games
- 2008 MBO of Limelight Projects
- 2009 Ambassador and consultant to British Gas and its swimming sponsorship
- 2010 500,000th Child learns to swim in the Southern Water Learn to Swim Programme which he fronts
- 2011 Appointed by the British Olympic Association as an ambassador to TEAM GB 2012
- Limelight Sport winning The Sports Industry Sports Agency of the Year
Matthew Willetts MA is the Director of Comicus who has over 35 years experience in television, film, theatre, and comedy club/cabaret entertainment, working as a performer, screenwriter, producer and agent. He lectured at Southampton Solent University in Comedy, Screenwriting, Television, Theatre & Radio. Matthew can sometimes be seen and heard on TV & Radio and often quoted in the national press and media publications. As well as speaking regularly at festivals and industry conferences, he has been a judge at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival and the Montreux Television Festival.
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