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Washington Post CEO Katharine Weymouth Joins Team to Bring FIFA World Cup to United States in 2018 or 2022


NEW YORK (November 2, 2009) – Katharine Weymouth, Chief Executive Officer of Washington Post Media and Publisher of The Washington Post, has formally accepted an invitation to join the Board of Directors for the USA Bid Committee in its endeavor to bring the FIFA World Cup™ to the United States in 2018 or 2022.

“Katharine’s understanding of national and global media platforms as well as the importance of a sound, effective message is a welcome addition to an already strong board of directors for the USA Bid Committee,” said Sunil Gulati, the Chairman of the USA Bid Committee and President of U.S. Soccer. “Katharine is also a visionary who, with three young children, fully understands the legacy that a World Cup in the United States would deliver for a future generations.”

The Washington Post has become known for its soccer coverage in recent years and sent three reporters to cover the 2006 FIFA World Cup™ in Germany. An entire area of The Post Web site is devoted to Major League Soccer’s D.C. United: www.washingtonpost.com/dcunited.

The Washington Post prides itself on delivering readers some of the best soccer coverage in the nation and our sports team is focused on producing high quality, in-depth news and analysis on soccer,” said Weymouth. “I am thrilled to be a part of bringing such an exciting international event to the United States, and hopefully to Washington, D.C.”

Katharine Weymouth is chief executive officer of Washington Post Media, a unit of The Washington Post Company that includes The Washington Post, Express and El Tiempo Latino, and publisher of The Washington Post across all platforms.  She was named to both positions in February 2008 after serving as vice president of advertising for The Washington Post since January 2005.

Weymouth joined The Post in 1996 as assistant counsel. After two years, she moved to Washingtonpost.Newsweek Interactive (WPNI), the online publishing subsidiary of The Washington Post Company, as associate counsel. In 2000, Weymouth returned to the newspaper, where she served as the advertising department’s liaison between The Post and WPNI. She became director of the advertising department’s jobs unit in 2002 and was named director of advertising sales in April 2004.

She earned a BA magna cum laude from Harvard College in 1988 and a JD from Stanford Law School in 1992. Following law school, she clerked on the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals for one year. She practiced law at Williams & Connolly in Washington, D.C., from 1993-1996.

The United States, Australia, England, Indonesia, Japan and Russia have formally declared their desire to host the FIFA World Cup™ in 2018 or 2022. Netherlands-Belgium and Portugal-Spain have each submitted joint bids for the 2018 and 2022 tournaments, while Qatar and South Korea have applied as candidates to play host only to the tournament in 2022.

All candidates must have their bid applications to FIFA by May 14, 2010.  FIFA’s 24‑member Executive Committee will study the bids, conduct site visits and name the hosts for the 2018 and 2022 tournaments in December 2010, completing a 21-month bid and review process.

Weymouth joins the Board of Directors of the USA Bid Committee that recently welcomed Walt Disney Company President and CEO Robert Iger, comedian and Seattle Sounders FC part-owner Drew Carey, MLS founding investor Philip Anschutz, Univision CEO Joe Uva, New England Revolution and New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft, U.S. Soccer Foundation President Ed Foster-Simeon, University of Miami President Donna Shalala, California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, U.S. National Team icons Landon Donovan and Mia Hamm, and former U.S. Secretary of State Henry A. Kissinger. In the months ahead, the USA Bid Committee will add additional national leaders from the sectors of sports, entertainment, government and business.

The USA Bid Committee’s efforts has earned the full support of President Barack Obama, who back in April reached out to FIFA – the world's governing body of soccer – to endorse the efforts to bring the world’s largest sporting event back to the United States.  In that letter to FIFA President Joseph “Sepp” Blatter and U.S. Soccer President Sunil Gulati, President Obama noted the role soccer played in his life as a youth, and its ability to unite people, communities and nations from every continent.

On Monday, July 27, Obama and Blatter met at the White House to discuss the U.S. bid and other soccer-related topics. The meeting was marked by Blatter confirming his invitation for President Obama to be his guest at the 2010 World Cup in South Africa. President Obama has expressed his interest in attending the event pending availability on his schedule.

The United States Men’s National team recently secured its place among the field of 32 for the 2010 FIFA World Cup™ in South Africa by capturing the top spot in the final round standings in CONCACAF. The Americans will be competing in their sixth consecutive FIFA World Cup, making them one of just seven nations that have participated in all six World Cups since 1990, including secured berths to South Africa in 2010. The U.S. Men’s National Team will have its group and match orders revealed at the FIFA World Cup Draw on December 4 in Cape Town, South Africa.

Last week, the USA Bid Committee released a study conducted by an independent consulting firm that estimates a conservative domestic economic impact of five billion dollars if the United States is chosen to host the FIFA World Cup™ in 2018 or 2022. The findings of the study indicate that the total economic impact projected for any one host city ranges from approximately $400 million to $600 million at today’s dollar value. The analysis also estimates that between 65,000 and 100,000 total new jobs would be created in the various host cities during the preparation and operation of the tournament in the year of the event. The study was undertaken by the Economics practice at AECOM, formerly Economics Research Associates (ERA), the world’s leading international sports and entertainment attraction consulting firm.   

ABOUT U.S. SOCCER:
Founded in 1913, U.S. Soccer has helped chart the course for soccer in the USA for more than 95 years as the governing body of the sport. In this time, the Federation’s mission statement has been simple and clear: to make soccer, in all its forms, a pre-eminent sport in the United States and to continue the development of soccer at all recreational and competitive levels. To that end, the sport’s growth in the past two decades has been nothing short of remarkable as U.S. Soccer’s National Teams have continually succeeded on the world stage while also growing the game here in the United States with the support of its members. For more information, visit ussoccer.com.

ABOUT THE USA BID COMMITTEE INC.:
The USA Bid Committee is a non-profit organization created to prepare a successful application to host the FIFA World Cup™ in 2018 or 2022 on behalf of the United States Soccer Federation.  The Bid Committee will submit its comprehensive bid to FIFA by May 2010, with FIFA’s 24‑member Executive Committee making a decision in December 2010. Members of the USA Bid Committee in alphabetical order include Houston Dynamo and Los Angeles Galaxy owner Philip Anschutz, comedian and Seattle Sounders FC part-owner Drew Carey, former Goldman Sachs Vice Chairman (Asia) Carlos Cordeiro, U.S. Men’s National Team player Landon Donovan, Executive Director David Downs, U.S. Soccer CEO and General Secretary Dan Flynn, U.S. Soccer Foundation President Ed Foster-Simeon, Major League Soccer Commissioner Don Garber, U.S. Soccer President and USA Bid Committee Chairman Sunil Gulati, U.S. Women’s National Team former player Mia Hamm, Walt Disney Company President and CEO Robert Iger, former U.S. Secretary of State Dr. Henry Kissinger, New England Revolution and New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft, California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, University of Miami President Donna Shalala and Univision CEO Joe Uva and Washington Post CEO and Publisher Katharine Weymouth. For more information, visit goUSAbid.com.

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