Sir Craig Reedie, former BWF President and current President of the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA), has been awarded the prestigious Knight Grand Cross of the Order of the British Empire (GBE) for services to sport.
The award is the highest accolade of its kind. In the official citation, Sir Craig is described as “one of the leading global figures in the world of sport” who “has led the fight against doping, tackling high-profile and highly controversial issues across sport”.
Reedie became the 12th President of the then-International Badminton Federation (now Badminton World Federation) in 1981 for a three-year term. He was one of the key figures in ensuring China’s entry into the IBF and the merger of the breakaway World Badminton Federation into its parent body. This paved the way for badminton to become an Olympic sport. Reedie persuaded IOC President Juan Antonio Samaranch to visit the 1983 World Championships in Copenhagen. The quality of matches that unfolded in Copenhagen convinced Samaranch that badminton was fit to be a medal sport at the Olympics.
Consequently, badminton was included as an exhibition sport at the 1988 Seoul Games and gained full inclusion on the programme at Barcelona in 1992.
Reedie helped bring about the era of the professional player in badminton, and established the Grand Prix circuit in 1983, the forerunner of the World Superseries and today’s HSBC BWF World Tour.
Reedie was closely involved with UK Sport, became Chairman of the British Olympic Committee (1993 to 2005), and has been a member of the IOC since 1994. In January 2014 he became President of the World Anti-Doping Agency.
He was appointed CBE in 1999 and knighted by the Queen in 2013.
Upon receiving the news of his GBE, Reedie said: “This is truly a great honour for me and for WADA. It recognises the important work that we are doing in leading the fight against doping in sport and in protecting clean athletes against cheats. This award is a vote of confidence for everyone within the anti-doping movement, a reminder that our efforts are appreciated and valued by the wider world and that our mission is an important one for society as a whole.”
Each year, on New Year’s Day and on 9 June (the British Queen’s official birthday), a list of those set to receive honours is published by the British government. The most common order into which those being honoured are admitted is the Order of the British Empire, instituted by King George V in 1917 as a way of marking civilian achievement. The GBE is the highest of the six ranks in the order and is presented for exceptional service.