On Thursday 12 November 2009, nearly six months after having left the presidency of the French National Sports Olympic Committee, Henri Serandour passed away in Dinard, in his beloved Brittany.
Born in Mans (Sarthe) on 15 April 1937, Henri Sérandour grew up in Rennes, where he discovered sport, particularly swimming, handball and water polo.
Having joined the swimming Committee of Brittany, Henri Sérandour was later elected vice-president of the French swimming Federation (1974-1981), then president from 1981 until 1993. His commitment towards swimming made him stand out at an international level. He was vice-president of the European Swimming League from 1984 until 1992, and joined the International Amateur Swimming Federation board on 1992 (1992-1996).
His career as a community leader gained him recognition among his peers who elected him, in 1993, president of the French National Sports Olympic Committee, where he was already vice-president since 1985. He carried out four mandates (1993-1997, 1997-2001, 2001-2005, 2005-2009) as head of the French sporting movement. In 2000, Henri Sérandour became member of the International Olympic Committee, position which he held until 2007, when he was obligated to leave this mandate due to the age limit. He was elected in the ICMG Executive Committee in October 2003 and did not seek reelection during the last elections in June 2009 in Pescara.
Four mandates at the presidency of the French National Sports Olympic Committee and international responsibilities
Henri Sérandour leaves everyone with a memory of an activist leader, a humanist who managed to adjust the French National Sports Olympic Committee to the new developments, placing sport in every debate of our time.
“He was first of all a leader and a builder. But above all, he was a Unifier” evoked Denis Masseglia, his successor, to whom Henri Sérandour had symbolically handed over the keys to the CNOSF on Tuesday 19 May 2009, “He inspired trust and gave trust”.