TRIATHLETE CHOSEN AS CEO OF SANTIAGO 2023
He is only 38-years-old, but has a professional resume that anyone would like. He is a businessman who left one of the most important financial companies in the world, JP Morgan, to volunteer in Africa, and today begins the most important challenge of his life as CEO of the Santiago 2023 Panam Games. His name: Eduardo Della Maggiora.
It’s been several months of intense searching and interviews by the Santiago 2023 Corporation’s Board to select a CEO who will have the difficult task of assembling the team that will organize the first Panam Games in Chile. Many candidates of different ages and diverse experiences in the fields of business, sports and marketing were interviewed. Four made it to the final stage, but only one candidate was able to convince everyone that he is the leader they are looking for.
Eduardo Della Maggiora is a civil engineer who worked for more than 10 years in the JP Morgan Investment Bank, first in Chile and then in New York. Then he left that job to go to live in Africa as a volunteer and after that, he started an enterprise called ‘Burn to Give’, which he founded a few years ago.
His passion for sport started late, yet he has still found success. He fell in love with triathlon and thanks to his perseverance, effort and dedication, he participated in the Hawaii Ironman and has become a two-time World Champion in his category representing Chile.
Today, he now holds the charge of carrying out the dream of many Chileans — to see the Pan American Games held for the first time on their soil.
“It is a great honor and it is a great responsibility at the same time, this is the first time that an event of this magnitude will be organized in Chile. It is a great motivation to achieve something that marks the history of our country with a world-class event,” Eduardo Della Maggiora told Panam Sports in an exclusive interview.
How does being an athlete help you lead the team who will deliver the Panam Games?
The positive thing is that I’ve lived the life of an athlete. That provides a very good connection to the sports legacy we want to leave and I also personally know the impact and power of sport in society. All of that allows me to take this job with greater passion and greater energy.
What do the Pan American Games mean to you?
It is the largest sports festival that exists on the continent. It is a dream that many have held since their childhood, together with the Olympic Games. And now being the leader working on Games in my own country is something unique.
In your opinion, what is the reality of Chilean sport and how can the organization of these Games benefit Chile?
The reality of Chilean sport is very good. Many things have been done in recent years. There is much to do. But I am proud of what has been done on the subject of sport. These Pan American Games hopefully give us another push to take Chilean sport further.
In June, Panam Sports will send its Santiago 2023 Follow-Up Commission to Chile. What can these sport leaders expect from the Santiago 2023 Corporation?
More than anything, the idea of the June visit is going to be presenting ourselves to the Commission, telling them who we are and who are team is that will be working over the next five years on this project. And we want to show them the kindness of Chile, not only in sport, but also in our culture and society.
How important is the private sector in this challenge that you are beginning to lead?
Very important. We will try to involve the private sector from day one. We are setting off with a lot of time and we want to involve them from the beginning and that will allow us to have Games of better quality and with more resources. And to be able to get more people excited about this great sports festival.
What are the next steps of your management?
I just joined three weeks ago. I am planning and building the foundation. I’m putting together the leadership team that I’m going to work with. People of sport, infrastructure, operations, administration, finance and corporate affairs. I want a team that has the same reasons and motivations that I had to join this great challenge.
Is this one of the biggest challenges of your professional career, Eduardo?
Without a doubt it is one of the biggest challenges I have ever had.
Finally, Eduardo, what is your ultimate goal with Santiago 2023?
My main goal is to organize a world-class event and leave a sporting, social and environmental legacy to the new generations and to be able to infect a country, a continent and hopefully the whole world with the spirit of the Games.