01 Jun 2022

2 years without former EOC President Janez Kocijančič

Categories: EOC

The EOC family commemorates today the anniversary of the death of the late EOC President Janez Kocijančič, who passed away on 1st June 2020.

Kocijančič was a great sports leader and Ambassador of the Olympic Movement.

EOC President Spyros Capralos fondly remembered him, saying: “On this day, I would like to pay tribute to my dear friend, Janez. I feel lucky to have had the chance to meet him and exchange views on many aspects of the Olympic movement.

“Aside from his outstanding qualities as a leader, he was a man of vision and wisdom, with an immeasurable knowledge of sport in all its shades. We miss him a lot and always remember him with fondness and respect.”

A lawyer by education, Janez had a successful career in both politics and business. But it was to sport that Janez dedicated the most important part of his life. A lifelong fan and champion of sports who enjoyed playing tennis and golf, and skiing, he was a key figure first in the Olympic Movement of Slovenia and later at the international level.

At a memorial ceremony in Ljubljana on 22 September 2020, Kocijančič was posthumously awarded the EOC Order of Merit in recognition of his outstanding contribution to the cause of European sport and his faithfulness to the Olympic ideals.

He also served as President of the Slovenian Ski Association and President of the Yugoslav Ski Association, when Slovenian skiers reached their greatest success worldwide.

At the time of Slovenia’s independence, Janez was one of the Members who strongly supported the foundation of the Slovenian Olympic Committee, which was established on 15 October 1991.

Janez was the first President of the NOC of Slovenia, a post he held from 1991-2014.

His career in the international sports world was equally successful. He was the Vice President of the International Ski Federation (FIS) since 2010. At the European level, the doors of the EOC opened to Janez in 1997, when he started his long journey in the organisation first as an auditor, then as a Member of the Executive Committee, Vice-President and finally President.