Event Partners

Cory Sertl (USA)

Name: Cory Sertl
Year of Birth: 1959
Nationality: USA
Residence: USA
First language: English
Other languages:

Candidates Goals

My goal is to bring my listening, communication and problem-solving skills along with my leadership experience, to the World Sailing Board to make the best decisions for the future of sailing. I have been committed to "giving back" to the sport of sailing for many years. I have had the opportunity to learn from and work with leaders in the sport and developed critical skills such as consensus building that are needed to be an effective board member.

We, as members of World Sailing, have an opportunity to do a re-set as a result of the current Pandemic. The Board leadership must focus on our core responsibilities as the International Federation for the sport of sailing. I look forward to serving on a Board of experienced individuals who are committed to strengthen the worldwide leadership of our sport and to effectively serve the needs of our members, the National Authorities.

It is essential to partner with our International Equipment Class Associations, as well as our Regional and Continental Members, to encourage participation in sailing and strengthen these three groups and enable them to play their crucial roles in delivering sailing to sailors.

Our Core Mission is to govern Racing in the sport of Sailing in ALL its forms, providing a level playing field for competition. World Sailing is the sole source of this governance in partnership with our Member National Authorities. We must invest in the training, mentoring and recruiting of race officials throughout the world.

World Sailing also has a responsibility to guide and develop sailing in regions where sailing activity is not widely practiced. The Board must make the Emerging Nations Program a priority to accomplish this role to promote and grow sailboat racing around the world.

Issues of Significance


As a Board member I will ensure that we "Right-Size" our organization in line with the actual income we receive.

  • Leverage our investments for greatest impact
  • Partner with member organizations to fulfil our mission
  • Equip our professional staff with the IT-tools needed to support the Federation.
  • Diversify our revenue sources. The support of the IOC is tremendous, but we cannot afford to be fully dependent on them. Sponsorship is one part of the solution. There needs to be other creative solutions as well.


The Board needs to work with the structures that are in place and, with the Members, find ways to make the structure better work for us.

  • Ensure an effective and efficient submission process is available to encourage effective debate.
  • Enable the voice of Athletes/Sailors to be heard and included in every decision that is taken.
  • Drive gender equality by developing women to be capable leaders and officials. It is not enough that there are equal Olympic medals and quota numbers for Men and Women.
  • Leverage volunteers and committee members in support of staff to ensure all that needs to be done can get done in a timely manner.

Leadership of the entire sport

Our role as a Core Olympic Sport is not simply to organize sailing events at the Games, but to be an effective and efficient leader of the entire sport. We need to ensure Olympic and Paralympic needs are met, but must have similar focus on the rest of the International Class activities and racing disciplines so they also receive the needed and deserved attention to grow our sport at its base.

All International Federations must ensure competitors are safe in all senses of the word. In sailing, we have the added responsibility to ensure equipment for safety is ready for our sailors to survive accidents and the power of the seas through our Special Regulations and mandatory reporting requirements.


Review the events that World Sailing runs, select those that we should continue to run, and determine how World Sailing may best partner with others to present these events in the best manner possible.

Olympic Leadership

  • Showcase and celebrate our sport through our selected events and formats.
  • Authorize and take leadership on the long-term calendar of events including strategy of event windows.
  • Develop improved regulations to confirm future events.

Paralympic Leadership

Celebrate the inclusiveness of our sport and grow the number of nations that include Para Sailing

Drive towards inclusion of Para Sailing on the Sport Program for the 2028 Paralympics.

Emerging Nations Program

A thoughtful approach to support developing sailing nations.

  • Promote affordable, durable pathway equipment to build a sustainable base
  • Focus on maximizing the legacy opportunities that exist in partnership with major Olympic, Youth, Regional Games and combinations of these. (Senegal is a great opportunity with the 2026 Youth Olympic Games.)
  • Partner with Manufacturers to introduce equipment to developing parts of the World through the IOC's NOC Development Grant Program.

Sailing Career

I truly love the diversity of sailing. Throughout my sailing career I have been been involved in small dinghies, Match Racing, Team Racing, Olympic classes, International One Design classes, One- design keelboats, large one design keelboats and handicapped racing.

I am a current active sailor and have raced with my family (husband, daughter and son) on a Farr 30, Melges IC37, Lightning and J-22 over the last few years. I competed in the Lightning World Championships in Salinas, Ecuador in 2017, the J-22 World Championships in Annapolis, MD in 2018 and the J70 World Championships in Marblehead, USA in 2018.

Sailing achievements:

2 time US Rolex Yachtswoman of the Year 2001,1995

Olympian: member of Team USA for the first women's only event in the 1988 Olympics as an alternate in the Women's 470.

Olympic campaigns 1986-1988 470, 1990-1992 470, 2001-2004 Yngling. Attended World Championships and pre-Olympic regattas in 20 nations.

3 time Rolex International Women's Keelboat Champion

World Champion IYRU Women's Doublehanded Championships 1988, 470. Goodwill Games 1990, Gold Medal

Participated in the first Women's Match Racing World Championships in Genoa Italy in 1999 placing 3rd.

Sailing Administration

My involvement in sailing administration has been as a volunteer "giving back" to the sport. Sailing has enriched my life with the opportunity to be an Olympian and be part of the Olympic movement. Through sailing I have had the opportunity to work with and develop friendships and relationships with people all over the world also committed to strengthen our sport.


US Sailing, President (Board chair) 2019-2021, Board member 2016-2018

Local sailing foundations, Board member: Rochester Community Boating Foundation, Conanicut Island Sailing Foundation, Fales Committee (advises US Naval Academy Sailing Program), Sport Advisory Board, University of Pennsylvania Sailing Team.

Relevant experience within last 20 years: certified US Sailing Instructor Trainer and Level 3 coach, US Sailing Club Race Officer, Coastal Safety at Sea Certificate. US Sailing Olympic Sailing Committee member.

Past chair of Youth Sailing programs at Rochester Yacht Club, Rochester, NY and Conanicut Yacht Club, Jamestown, RI. Coach and organizer of High School Sailing programs.

Event Chair: 2013 J-22 World Championships, Newport, RI 2016 Lightning North American Championships, Rochester, NY.

Race Committee volunteer: Sonar World Championships, IFDS World Championships, local and regional events in Optimists, 420's and Lasers.

Other Sports Administration

I raised 2 children who participated in the sport of ski racing. As a result of their involvement, and my husband's continued involvement internationally on the Masters circuit, I am familiar with the rules, running events and the administration of ski racing. Alpine ski racing and the sport of sailing share similar challenges and opportunities.

I am a lifelong tennis player (and fan) and play 2-3 times/week and used to compete as a junior and in USTA age group events.

Roles within World Sailing

Council member representating Group P, 2005 to present

Chair, Youth Events Sub-Committee 2013-2020, member 2009-2012.

IYRU and ISAF Committees: Attended first meeting in 1995 as a member of the Women's Sailing Committee. Served on the Events Committee, the Olympic Commision and as the Women's Representative on Council.

As chair of the YESC I have attended 6 Youth World Championships.



University of Pennsylvania, Bachelor of Arts, History

George Washington University, Master of Business Administration, Finance


Manager, Sermar Management, Rochester, NY, Real Estate Management and Development specializing in multi- family communities.


Married to my husband Mark for 32 years, Two children: Katja 26, Nicholas 24 who competed at the University level and continue to race sailboats with friends and together with us as a family activity.

Nominating MNAs

Antigua & Barbuda Sailing Association, Australian Sailing, Bahamas Sailing Association, Barbados Sailing Association, Bermuda Sailing Association, Confederação Brasileira de Vela, Deutscher Segler Verband, Federación Argentina de Yachting, Federacion Dominicana de Vela, Fédération Française de Voile, Federación Mexicana de Vela, Federación Peruana de Vela, Federacion de Vela de Puerto Rico, Irish Sailing, Jamaica Yachting Association, Polish Yachting Association, Royal British Virgin Islands Yacht Club, Royal Yachting Association, Sail Canada, Singapore Sailing Federation, South African Sailing, Swedish Sailing Federation, Trinidad and Tobago Yachting Association, US Sailing, Virgin Islands Sailing Association, Yachting New Zealand

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