World Skating Federation
The WSF was founded in the aftermath of the 2002 Winter Olympics figure skating scandal. Plans for the organization were announced in March 2003, and involved former ISU officials Sally-Anne Stapleford, Sonia Bianchetti, Ron Pfenning, and Britta Lindgren.
Most of the group's members were noted to be from the United States, or work there. At the time plans for WSF were announced, the group had a planned budget of $1 million, but had only raised about $200,000. The money was mostly raised from individuals making small donations.
At the time of the group's founding, it had received no support from any national skating federations, despite claims at the time the United States Figure Skating Association will support the WSF. The USFSA's executive committee would later vote to endorse the WSF's principles, but not the group itself.
ISU officials condemned efforts at creating the WSF, and also criticized its members, saying they did nothing to produce judging reforms during their time at ISU.
Criticisms of WSF members, similar to those voiced by the ISU, were echoed by those outside of the ISU, but the group did receive positive comments from at least one commentator, who said its members were echoing sentiments that are well known for some time.
Response by ISUEdit
ISU officials have threatened to punish federations or individuals who support the breakaway group. Hungarian judge Judit Furst-Tombor was dropped from the judging panel at a competition, a day after she joined the press conference announcing the WSF's founding. Some national federations, like Skate Canada, also threatened to expel its members, should they support the WSF.
In response, WSF officials filed a lawsuit against ISU in December 2003, citing anti-competitive behavior. The lawsuit was ultimately dismissed in February 2005. Shortly thereafter, Pfenning, at the time the group's Acting President, announced that the group will be dissolved.
Eventually, ISU decided that Furst-Tombor, along with Stapleford, Pfenning, Lindgren, Jon Jackson and Jan Garden, were excluded from the group.
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