Steffi Jones announced as LOC President for 2011
World- and European Champion Stephanie Jones will be the President of the Local Organising Committee for the FIFA Women's World Cup 2011. This was announced today by German football's administrative body, the Deutsche Fußball-Bund (DFB). The 34-year old Jones, who plays her farewell-season for Bundesliga club 1. FFC Frankfurt, was introduced to the media at a press conference in the DFB headquarters on Friday afternoon.
"I feel honoured by the DFB's decision to entrust this pivotal position to me", said Jones. "We have a tremendous opportunity. Women's football has achieved so much in Germany, and the World Cup will give our game an even bigger boost, in Germany and throughout the world. I look forward to a great cooperation with DFB President Dr. Theo Zwanziger. These will be years full of excitement."
"Steffi Jones has been a great player of international renown. She really has won every title imaginable; and we are happy to have her as President of our 2011 organisation", said DFB- President Dr. Theo Zwanziger. "Her life-story is a great excample on the integrative effect of sports, which our society is in such dire need off. Her involvement alone guarantees that women's football will be better of in five years from today. Steffi Jones is a woman that can work at the grassroots. She will have a huge impact on our recruitment for girls' football. She will be the ideal ambassador of the 2011 World Cup."
Because of her innumerable successes on the pitch and her winning personality, Steffi Jones has been a true ambassador of women’s football for a long time. Jones, who was born in Frankfurt’s district Bonames, has played football on a world-class level for the last 15 years. She was a member of the 2003 World Cup Champions, when an injury severely limited her playing time. Together with Doris Fitschen, she formed one of the best inside defenses ever seen in women’s football. She won the national championship on both shores of the Atlantic: In 2003 with Washington Freedom, and five times with the 1. FFC Frankfurt (2001, 2002, 2003, 2005, 2007) in the German Bundesliga. UEFA-Cup championships (2002,2006) and the DFB-Cup (2001, 2002, 2003 and 2007) complete her impressive collection.
The city of Frankfurt has given the daughter of a German mother and a U.S. soldier the role as official sports ambassador. She’s also highly esteemed on the TV circuit as an expert analyst. She was awarded Hessian’s honorary medal for her unsalaried efforts towards integration and a tolerant society. Currently, she’s working on her coaching license at the German Sports University in Cologne.
It has been an uphill struggle, though. The father left the family early on and Steffi Jones grew up in a troublesome area of the city. She experienced racist banter in her early school years. Her older brother Christian was involved in crime and developed a drug-addiction. Steffi Jones chose a much different path. Football became the outlet for her energy and passion. Football was her turnon, which carried her all the way to the World and European Championships.
November 2006, the family suffered another major blow. Her little brother Franky, 22 years old at the time, fell victim to a bombing attack in Irak. He lost both his legs. “All my moments of doubt are nothing compared to Franky’s injury”, says Steffi Jones, who is openly critical about the ongoing turmoils in Irak. Once again, football helped her climb back into life: only a few weeks later, the 111-time national player returned to the 1. FFC Frankfurt, directing the team’s defense with her poise and veteran experience.
New challenges await Steffi Jones. Now, she takes over as the President of the Local Organising Committee for the FIFA Women’s World Cup 2011. First day in the office – January 1, 2008. It’s only three-and-a-half years until kickoff.