Perkins new Swimming Australia president

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Two-times Olympic gold medallist Kieren Perkins is the new president of Swimming Australia (SA).

The governing body on Saturday announced that its board had elected Perkins for the role - which was vacated by John Bertrand after last week's AGM.

The 47-year-old Perkins won the 1500m at the 1992 and 1996 Olympics, set numerous world records in his career and was the first person to hold the Olympic, World, Commonwealth and Pan Pacific titles simultaneously.

He retired from swimming in 2000 with 23 medals at international competitions and was inducted into the Sport Australia Hall of Fame in 2002.

The appointment of Perkins - who returned to the SA board as a non-executive director in June last year after a previous stint from 2001 to 2007 - was lauded by outgoing Swimming Australia CEO Leigh Russell.

"I think Kieren's swimming pedigree speaks for itself, but he also has incredible business acumen that will be vital to the role as we look to navigate in a post COVID environment." Russell said in a statement.

"He has spent a huge portion of his life in the sport and has that great blend of understanding the nuances of swimming and strategic experience from the corporate sector."

Perkins said he wanted to work on ensuring swimming remained strong in Australia.

"I have a strong desire to maintain swimming's position as Australia's most successful Olympic sport and with only a year out from Tokyo it's important to keep a level of stability and focus," he said.

Chief Operating Officer Tim Dempster will act in the role of interim CEO while a search is undertaken for the permanent position to replace Russell, who is stepping down at the end of the month.