The Paralympic Order, the highest honour in the Paralympic movement, will be awarded to International Wheelchair and Amputee Sports Federation (IWAS) President Paul DePace, Denmark’s three-time Paralympian Karl Vilhelm Nielsen and Secretary General of Fédération Française Handisport Gerard Masson, on Thursday in the capital.
The Orders will be presented by Sir Philip Craven in one of his final acts as International Paralympic Committee (IPC) President during the 2017 Paralympic Sport and Media Awards which is supported by Allianz.
DePace will be recognised for his almost 50 years of work which has contributed to all levels of the Paralympic Movement. During his time he has been an athlete, coach, Team USA Chef de Mission and Board Director for the Atlanta 1996 Paralympic Games Organising Committee.
His roles have also included Vice President of the International Stoke Mandeville Wheelchair Sports Federation and IPC Executive Committee. As IWAS President since 2001, he has done much to promote Paralympic sport internationally from the grassroots level to the high performance stage.
Nielsen will be awarded the honour after making a huge impact on the lives of people with impairment from Board involvement to governmental and legal advisory positions.
Gerard Masson, who has gone from top flight table tennis player to one of the most influential positions in Para sport in France, will be the final Paralympic Order recipient.
In his role as Secretary General of Fédération Française Handisport, Masson helped to create the National Paralympic Committee of France in 2009 and has done much to develop the Paralympic Movement in his native country.
“Between them they have dedicated more than 100 years to the Paralympic Movement at various levels making a monumental impact,” said Craven.
There will also be 10 other presentations recognising achievements both on and off the field of play at the Rio 2016 Paralympic Games. Previous recipients of the Paralympic Order have included former IOC President Jacques Rogge, Lord Sebastian Coe and Dr Whang Youn Dai.
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