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Merit Awards 2022

Merit Awards 2022

OAA takes this opportunity to congratulate our three Merit Award Recipients, Deanna Sanitoa, Peoria Koshiba and Peter Hamilton. We thank them for their dedication to their Member Federations and Oceania Athletics Area Association.

Deanna Sanitoa

Deanna has been the General Secretary of ASA for more than 20 years. She has spent all of this time promoting athletics in the school and church community in American Samoa. 

Deanna is an active coach in ASA and continues to strive to grow the sport in the Federation.

She has been a representative at OAA and World Athletics Congresses since the early 2000s.

During Deanna’s time as the General Secretary, she has filled the role of MF Coach, Head Technical Official as well whilst always taking on the administrative skills expected to be undertaken by a General Secretary.

Deanna is a role model to other female administrators and coaches in the Oceania Area and we are proud to call her our Friend and Colleague.

Peoria Koshiba

Peoria has been the General Secretary of Palau Track and Field since 2009 and was a member of the OAA Council for one term in 2015.   Peoria represented Palau at the 2000 Olympics in Sydney – wondering if you can guess how her daughter Sydney got her name.

Peoria has held the position of Development Officer since 2005 and is an active coach.   Peoria has travelled as the Team Manager/Coach to a Oceania, World and Regional event for more than 10 years.

One of her passions is out of stadia/community events which have proven incredibly successful for Palau.

Peoria spends her every waking hour working for Athletics in her Federation.  She is an incredible role model for young sports administrators making their way through sport.

Peoria has continued to remain active in the sport as an athlete and has encouraged a generation of athletes in her Federation to be involved with Athletics.

Peter Hamilton

Few have been content to maintain as quiet a “public” profile in making such a substantial and completely voluntary contribution to his sport, as Peter Hamilton.

After beginning his time in athletics as a club race walker in South Australia, Peter moved to Canberra to pursue his profession as a teacher. Peter quickly involved himself in officiating, competition organisation and team management. 

Canberra had been awarded the 1985 World Cup – where Peter was appointed as competition director.

Oceania AA recognized his more diverse skills by appointing Peter as assistant manager of its team for the 1994 World Cup in London. When the World Juniors came to Sydney in 1996 there was no question whether Peter should be Competition Director. 

Peter changed employment from teaching to a role at the Australian Sports Commission where he could really make an impact for sporting bodies through the new technologies. He learned on the job and introduced the internet and email to many national sporting organisations. 

At weekends back in volunteer mode he made sure athletics became the trail blazer, developing computerised entry list and results systems. These became the norm through his work not only in Australia but for many competitions in Oceania.

Many, at least those who are aware, will however rate as Peter’s greatest contribution to athletics in Australia as his leadership of the historical data base project. 

Peter has continued to develop his passion for officiating throughout this time, first obtaining the IAAF Level II Officiating Diploma (after which he served on the Oceania Area Panel from 1998 to 2001) and then in 2002 passing the Level III course, qualifying him to join the IAAF International Technical Officials Panel, to which he has been re-appointed on the occasion of each evaluation since.

He has been selected as an ITO/Referee for Oceania competitions and a broad range of IAAF World Series competitions including the 2014 World Juniors (where he served as chief) and the 2015-17 and soon to be 2022 World Championships. Peter was a member of the Jury of Appeal for the 2019 Worlds in Doha. 

His passion for voluntary service to athletics in Australia and Oceania has never waned, finding a way even when based overseas for the making of the most significant of contributions. Peter’s exceptional service and devotion to the growth and modernisation of athletics in our region makes him a very appropriate nominee for the Oceania Athletics Merit Award.

OAA takes this opportunity to congratulate all three Merit Award Recipients and to thank them for their dedication to their Member Federations and Oceania Athletics Area Association.