Today François Carrard has left us, he passed away in Lausanne, the cradle of his work and his life as a man of culture. For me, he was not only the lawyer of our Association; but a friend, and a brother.
 
We have known each other for more than forty years, from the time he was the General Director of the IOC. We owe him a lot because thanks to him in 2006 we landed in Lausanne, where we were granted legal status: a fundamental step in our AIPS history. He personally accompanied us to the offices of the Municipality of Lausanne, took us by the hand and created the conditions for launching our Association into the future. 
 
He believed in us and became one of us. He has participated in many of our Congresses and has helped us in delicate moments. He taught us to study every detail carefully and favoured our growth. It was a pleasure to be in his company, every meeting was a life lesson. His subtle irony made everything simple, and manageable. 
 
He was a jazz enthusiast and also vice president of the Montreux Jazz Artists Foundation, which organizes the great Festival in July every year. It was very interesting spending a few days with him in that musical context in which we linked the problems of sport and our profession to musical notes. He collected many things to have evidence of the evolution of culture, of everyday life. 
 
He was a member of our Ethics Commission and in recent months he had studied the drafting of our new Statute to make it more modern and projected into future years. He was fundamental in the creation and launch of the AIPS Sport Media Awards, without him we would not have created this event that allows us to embrace journalism in the world and which also guarantees an important future for our Association. 
 
Words are not enough to remember him, we will have to do it with facts because he will continue to be one of us. 
 
François was a true friend who believed in us.
 
Gianni Merlo - AIPS President