U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Committee announces layoffs, furloughs

The US CEO of the Olympic and Paralympic Committee, Sarah Hirshland, told its staff on Thursday that the organization will cut 51 positions and leave another 33 employees on leave.

Hirshland said last month that the organization needed to cut costs by 10 to 20 percent from the 2020-2024 quad to avoid the financial implications of postponing the Tokyo Olympics originally scheduled for this summer, and the COVID-19 compensate for pandemic.

The USOPC is also facing a series of lawsuits involving the organizations and some of the national governing bodies under its umbrella, such as USA Gymnastics, USA Swimming and USA Taekwondo.

The USOPC reported $ 322.86 million in revenue and $ 275.1 million in expenses in an internal tax agency for the fiscal year 2018, the most recent year available. The organization spent $ 7.64 million in executive and top executives’ compensation, $ 37.7 million in other salaries and wages, and $ 7.5 million in retirement benefits and other benefits in 2018. The USOPC also posted $ 13.6 million legal fees for 2018.

The USOPC listed $ 336.6 million in assets in the filing.

The following is Hirshland’s letter to USOPC employees:


Since we all process today’s emotions, I hope you’ve found some time to connect with colleagues and friends. Our relationships are so important as we navigate through tumultuous times together. Thank you for making this a priority and investing some extra time to take care of yourself and each other.

Today we notified 51 team members that their positions have been eliminated and another 33 that their roles have been placed on leave. In addition, we have completed the assignments of 23 temporary agency workers and offered 32 team members a relocation option that gives them a different role than they previously had.

I am overwhelmed by the magnitude of this change. It is important.

You deserve to understand the decisions we have made and how our organization, Team USA athletes and NGBs are affected. You may recall that we met on April 21 to discuss the impact of the Tokyo Games postponement and the COVID 19 virus on the financial stability of our organization. I explained that the income we would collect this year and in the years to come would decrease. As a result, we have decided to proactively reduce our costs by 10-20% over the 2020-2024 period to ensure we can deliver on our mission and serve Team USA athletes for years to come. We defined the principles that would guide our decisions and promised to complete our evaluation by the end of May – and I also told you everything was on the table, including layoffs and leave.

For the past four weeks, our leaders have worked together to support a multi-functional team of finance, strategy and business advice, and people and culture to achieve their strategic priorities, operational mandates, current budgeted investments and the skills and people needed to achieve this, to evaluate. their goals for the next 4.5 years. They carried out this evaluation with the aim of finding the necessary efficiency to achieve our target reduction.

During this time, we have also continued to learn more about the future and the challenges we all face when returning to work, to training and to events and competitions. It has become clear that it will be months, not weeks, before we are fully operational again, especially at our training centers in Colorado Springs and Lake Placid. We are adapting, even more than we had imagined, to a new way of working and we cannot predict how long it will take before we have clarity about the future.

This reality, coupled with the economic challenges affecting our revenues, have led us to identify several areas where we will reduce our planned investments for the rest of this year and for the next four-year period.

Next Tuesday morning we will look at these planned changes in more detail during a virtual city hall. For today, our focus remains on our team members.

Many of you have already discussed the changes taking place within your team with your managers. If you have not done so, you will be given the opportunity to do so soon. For some there will be a lot of change and for others there will be little or no change at all. But we will all have to adapt to a smaller team, new responsibilities and a different structure. That process will take some time and a lot of patience.

At the end of a difficult day, and a heavy month, we all need to ask ourselves if something that feels so terrible is necessary and right.

I think these actions are the right ones. All this will make all the difference. Because it is not one thing that determines our success. It is the right combination of mission, values, strategic focus, discipline, talent and fiscal responsibility and efficiency that will determine our success. These actions will:

1. Support the resources necessary for athletes of Team USA to achieve competitive success

2. Support Team USA athletes in new ways off the playing field through health and wellbeing, commitment and a greater commitment to safety than ever before

3. Offer an exceptional experience for the Team USA Delegation at three Games over a four-year period

4. Invest in the strength and compliance of our partner NGBs so that they too can support Team USA athletes better than ever

5. Integrate our teams in innovative ways to optimize the impact of our voice and that of Team USA athletes while jointly inspiring our country

6. Reward our talented team members for delivering results and living our values

7. Lay the foundation for a strong organization, not only in the next quad, but also in that in which we welcome the world to our home.

We owe it to Team USA and all our supporters. Today and for years to come.

I look forward to being with you all on Tuesday.


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