BitPay is moving to a larger office to meet the explosive increase in demand. BitPay has added more expertise to its staff with Timo Dijkstra as Compliance Specialist. Timo previously worked as a Senior Compliance and Risk Consultant for PriceWaterhouseCoopers and has a Corporate Law degree from the University of Utrecht. BitPay has also added Walter Drieënhuizen and Niels Kerstholt as Sales Associates, and Carla Jagger as the Office Manager. Walter has previously worked at DocData, and Niels is a three time Olympian and world shorttrack speed skating 2014 relay champion. Worldwide, BitPay has grown to 75 full-time employees with 5 offices in Atlanta, Amsterdam, San Francisco, Buenos Aires, and St. Petersburg.
Visa Worldwide Olympic Games Sponsor kicked off its congratulatory advertisement following the 19-time Olympic medalist Michael Phelps victory as the most decorated Olympian of all-time. With his most recent gold medal, Phelps broke the Olympic medal total of 18-now holding 19- and a record set in 1964. Visa used actual video and photo cheers from…
The Citi Team USA Flag Tour made its seventh stop at Citi’s site in Elk Grove. U.S. Olympic triathlete Gwen Jorgensen, who spoke to a crowd of 200 people about her participation in Citi’s Every Step of the Way℠ program, an innovative digital program benefitting U.S. Olympic and Paralympic hopefuls and athletes of all ages in communities across America. To launch the Every Step of the Way program, Citi has donated $500,000 to the USOC to benefit U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Sport Programs in communities across the country. Citi’s $500,000 donation is being represented by 50 million ThankYou® Points — the currency of Citi ThankYou® Rewards. This unique program allows the American people to help allocate these ThankYou® Points to sport programs through activity on Facebook and Twitter, allowing Team Citi athletes to say “thank you” to the sport programs that have inspired them.
Chase Card Services launched the Chase “Sapphire” 2012 Ski Experience Program at Stowe Mountain Lodge in Stowe, VT, on January 13, featuring U.S. Ski champion Picabo Street. Through Chase Ultimate Rewards, Chase Sapphire cardmembers can redeem points for weekend packages that include three nights of luxury accommodations, ski clinics and a dinner reception with Street and a two-day lift ticket. The two-person packages also features airport transportation to and from the resort, feature custom ski and boot fittings, and a wine pairing dinner with journalist and sommelier Anthony Giglio. Cardmembers also have the choice between a spa treatment and other mountain activities such as snowshoeing, snowmobiling and hot air balloon rides.
VISA has opened its “Olympians Reunion Center” inviting all past
Olympians in Greece to enjoy its ongoing hospitality during their visits
to the “ATHENS 2004 Olympic Games.” There are 80,000 Olympians worldwide. The “Center” was founded through a partnership between the IOC, the WOA and VISA, its founding partner, and will be run by VISA and the Hellenic Olympic Association. The “Reunion Center” was first developed by VISA for the 1996 Games in Atlanta and served again, in Sydney and Salt Lake City, to enhance the Games’ experience for all visiting Olympians.
Visa Canada announced that Micaela
Russell from Calgary, Alberta has “what it takes.” The 11 year-old student is
a grand prizewinner of the Visa Olympics of the Imagination (VOI) Art
Challenge, an International Art Competition sending four talented young
Canadians to the 2002 Olympic Winter Games in Salt Lake City.
The Elbow Park Elementary School student created a masterpiece entitled
“Don’t Burst the Bubble Keep on Dreaming” and was one of the four winners
selected from 10,797 artistic entries received from across the country. On a
global basis, children were asked to draw, paint or illustrate the phrase
“You’ve got what it takes” to compete as a Winter Olympian and Micaela met the
challenge by drawing a figure skater practicing what it takes to compete.
Micaela’s artwork was selected as the best entry from the 3,625 entries
received from the Western Canadian component of the challenge.
“While reviewing the artwork, it was amazing to see the thinking, the
talent and the creativity it represented,” said Rick Pyves, Senior Vice
President, Visa Canada. “The VOI program is a very exciting way for young
people to learn about the Olympic Movement and to catch the spirit of friendly
Micaela is the second youth from Alberta to win a trip to the Winter
Olympics since the VOI program began in 1994. In the first year of the
program, Bunthoeun Som, a 12-year-old student at McCauley Senior Elementary
High School in Edmonton, won the Western component of the Art Challenge and an
all-expenses paid trip for two to the Winter Games in Lillehammer, Norway.
Micaela will join three other Canadian grand prizewinners, and one of
their parents or a legal guardian, at the 2002 Olympic Winter Games from
February 14th to February 18th, 2002. At the Games, the winners will attend
three Olympic events (Men’s Luge Doubles, Men’s Super G, and Women’s Hockey),
and they will participate in outdoor activities including tube sledding,
attending the medal ceremonies and touring Salt Lake City.
Information kits on the Art Challenge were mailed directly to teachers at
schools across Canada. The Art Challenge ran from September 10th to October
31st, 2001. Judging was based on originality, imagination, artistic merit, and
how well the art captured the theme of “You’ve Got What It Takes” to compete
as a Winter Olympian. Since the challenge began in 1994, more than 24,097
Canadian children have submitted artistic entries.
“As a supporter of the VOI program and a close partner with Visa, we were
thrilled with the excellent response to the program this year,” said Deborah
Allan, Executive Director, Communications, Canadian Olympic Association. “This
year the program received the highest number of entries ever, helping us
educate almost 11,000 young Canadians on the history and the importance of the
Olympic Games and Olympic values.”
VOI is an International Art Challenge that asks children aged 9 to 13 to
use their imaginations to visually depict a designated theme. Launched at the
1994 Olympic Winter Games in Lillehammer, Norway, the program is designed to
teach children about the goals, ideals and history of the Olympics. On a
global basis, Visa will send 16 children from three continents to the Winter
Games this February. This year, winners were selected from Brazil, Canada,
China, Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland, Romania, Russia, and Slovakia.
As the “World’s Best Way to Pay”, Visa is the leading credit card payment
brand in Canada and around the world. There are more than 23.6 million VISA
cards in Canada accepted at more than 595,000 merchant locations across the
country. VISA is accepted at over 23 million locations around the world
including over 700,000 ATMs. The Internet address for Visa is
Four-time Olympian, HSH Prince Albert of Monaco, recently announced program details for the Visa Olympians Reunion Center and invited all Olympic Alumni to enjoy ongoing hospitality during their visit to the Olympic Games in Salt Lake City. “Olympians from around the world will have a place of their own — to gather, renew old friendships and share their unique experiences,” he said. “The Visa Olympians Reunion Center has served importantly to promote the Olympic spirit and ideals.” Prince Albert is the International Spokesperson for the Center.
The Visa Olympians Reunion Center will celebrate its Grand Opening with a special program on February 7, and will begin daily operations on February 8, with hours from 2:00 p.m. until midnight throughout the Games.
Designed expressly for the use of Olympic Alumni, the Visa Olympians Reunion Center was first developed for the 1996 Games in Atlanta and served again, in Sydney, to enhance the Games experience of all visiting Olympians. More than 2,700 individual Olympians visited the Sydney Center. Now part of an Olympic tradition, the Salt Lake Visa Olympians Reunion Center will be the first at an Olympic Winter Games. The program is based on a partnership between the IOC, the World Olympians Association, the U.S. Olympic Committee and Visa, the founding partner.
With its downtown location in the Salt Lake Hardware Building, adjacent to the Olympic Medals Plaza, it will be a lively place for the world’s Olympians to congregate and enjoy hospitality. The Visa Olympians Reunion Center, as a communications focal point, will serve as a focal point for Olympians to enjoy the full range of Olympic family activities.
“The Visa Olympians Reunion Center is a critical part of our focus during each Olympic Games,” remarked Liston Bochette, three-time Olympian and Secretary General of the World Olympians Association (WOA), the international alumni organization founded by the International Olympic Committee. “We are making great strides in expanding every Olympians opportunity to participate within the Olympic family and continue to impact the movement productively. We are very grateful to Visa for its ongoing commitment to the Olympic movement, and in particular for this program which has benefited thousands of Olympians since its inception at the 1996 Atlanta Games.”
Olympians are invited to pre-register for the Visa Olympians Reunion Center on the Internet by going to the World Olympians Association website at . They will be able to get updated information on the reunion center program and other activities of the World Olympians Association.
The “Olympians Reunion Centre,” a joint venture designed to host all Olympians at the upcoming Sydney 2000 Olympic Games, was officially launched this week in Sydney, Australia, by worldwide Olympic sponsor, Visa International, the Australian Olympic Committee (AOC) and the City of Sydney.
Pre-eminent Australian Olympians Herb Elliott, Murray Rose, Raelene Boyle, Ilsa and John Konrads today joined Rafer Johnson, to celebrate the launch of the Olympians Reunion Centre. Mr. Johnson won silver in the Melbourne 1956 Olympic Games and gold in Rome 1960 Olympic Games. He also had the honor of lighting the cauldron for the Los Angeles Olympic Games in 1984.
Designed as a hospitality facility for Olympic alumni athletes, the Olympians Reunion Centre will be located in Sydney’s historic Customs House at Circular Quay adjacent to one of Sydney’s Olympic “Live Sites”. The Centre will be open from 10:00 a.m. until midnight each day during the Olympic Games.
“Visa is proud of our role in creating this Centre,” said Tom Shepard, senior vice president, International Marketing Partnerships and Sponsorship, Visa International. “We have sponsored many sports programs over the past decade but none so important as this. It is a salute to these living legends of sports and our way of thanking them for their undaunted spirit, their devotion to teamwork and Olympic ideals, and to the many great moments in Olympic history they have provided,” Shepard noted.
The Olympians Reunion Centre will provide a hospitality oasis in a club-like setting for Olympic alumni athletes worldwide while they are in Sydney. The Centre will offer meeting areas, refreshment services, communications and video facilities, and assistance with special reunion functions. “The City of Sydney is privileged to host the greats of the Olympics at the Olympians Reunion Centre,” Lord Mayor Frank Sartor said.
“It is terrific that Customs House, located at one of the Olympics Live sites where hundreds of thousands of people will experience the Games atmosphere, can become a home away from home for the World’s Olympic Alumni, to gather and celebrate,” the Lord Mayor said.
The Olympians Reunion Centre is the property of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) and is being supported by Visa International (the presenting partner), the Australian Olympic Committee (appointed as project manager by the IOC), the City of Sydney, the World Olympians Association and by the National Olympic Committees worldwide.
An earlier version of the centre was actually created during the 1996 Atlanta Games when Visa opened what was then called the Visa Olympic Reunion Centre. Working with Olympians worldwide and spearheaded by 1968 Olympic Decathlon Gold Medalist, Bill Toomey, and four time Olympic Gold Medalist Al Oerter, the Centre was open during the entire Atlanta Olympic Games.
Rafer Johnson said, “As an Olympian it is important to be able to renew old acquaintances. By creating the first Olympian Reunion Centre in Atlanta, Visa made it possible to have a place at the Olympic Games to do just that. I had the chance to meet many fellow decathletes at the Centre who competed before, after and with me. For me personally, it was one of the best things that happened at the Atlanta Games. I look forward to being in Sydney in September to once again be a part of this special facility.”
The Atlanta Centre proved successful among many Olympic alumni with more than 1,400 Olympians and 1,300 of their guests using the Centre as a place to renew friendships and reminisce.
With the AOC acting as host and with the support of the World Olympians Association, the Olympian Reunion Centre concept will continue to grow and expand into future Olympic Games.
The World Olympians Association is an independent global organization founded in 1995, to represent the interests of the 60,000 living Olympians around the world and strengthen their involvement within the Olympic movement.
“The Sydney 2000 Olympic Games will attract a large number of Olympians from previous Olympics from all around the globe. One of their pleasures while in Sydney will be to catch up with their contemporaries and rekindle memories of their own Games experience. The Reunion Centre will be the place where this all happens,” said 1960 Olympic gold medallist and AOC Director of Athlete and Corporate Relations and Executive Director WOA, Mr. Herb Elliott.
Like the athletes who will be hosted at Sydney’s Olympic Village, Olympians worldwide now will have their own place to relax, renew friendships and reminisce about their Games experiences.
Artistic talents and creative imaginations will send five children from the United States to the 1998 Olympic Winter Games in Nagano, Japan next month. Winners met the challenge of the “Visa Olympics of the Imagination” international art competition, a contest inspiring thousands of children worldwide — between the ages of nine and 13 — to submit original artwork illustrating a special person they admire participating in an Olympic Winter sport.
! The five U.S. winners selected from thousands of entries nationwide are Philip Tanedo, Los Angeles; Alyssa Wehr, Grinnell, Iowa; Shuki Merlis, Atlanta; Zareen Mehmud, Brooklyn, New York; and Sadek Ghaznavi, Brooklyn, New York.
“We are proud to be able to bring together the worlds of sport and art by honoring artistic talents and imaginations of schoolchildren in true Olympic style,” said Michael Beindorff, executive vice president of marketing and product management, Visa U.S.A. “‘Visa Olympics of the Imagination’ is an opportunity to unite people from around the world in a celebration of the human spirit and Olympic competition.”
The five young artists from the United States join 21 children from 13 nations on an all-expenses-paid trip by Visa with a parent to witness the pinnacle of athletic competition. Children’s artwork created for the contest will be displayed at an international art exhibit in the Olympic city of Nagano, Japan.
Winning United States entries can be found on the Visa Olympic of the Imagination Internet site at [http//www.visa.com/visakids/].
“Jonathon Larson La ‘American’ Boheme”
Philip Tanedo, age 13 from Los Angeles, portrays Jonathon Larson, the composer of the Broadway musical Rent, figure skating because he is a true artist and figure skating is one of the most artistic Olympic sports.
“Mother Teresa An Eternal Legacy”
Zareen Mehmud, age 13 from Brooklyn, New York, portrays Mother Teresa as a hockey player fighting the opposing team’s defense to make her goal symbolizing how Mother Teresa was a fighter for her beliefs.
Alyssa Wehr, age 13 from Grinnell, Iowa, admires her sister Katie and portrays her figure skating symbolizing her efforts to never give up.
“Koss Skates for Olympic Aid”
Shuki Merlis, age 11 from Atlanta, portrays Johann Olav Koss the great Olympian speed skater who started Olympic Aid, an organization that raises money for children that need help all over the world.
“‘Air’ Olympics ’98”
Sadek Ghhaznavi, age 13 from Brooklyn, New York, portrays a famous basketball player competing in a variety of Olympic Winter sports symbolizing his reputation of athletic prowess and talented ability to master any sport.
United States winners were selected by a prestigious panel of judges at an event sponsored by Visa in conjunction with the International Children’s Art Museum in San Francisco, which specializes in the exchange of children’s art from around the world. Judges included Bay Area Olympian Matt Biondi and world-renowned artist Alexandra Nechita, 12, who is touted as “Mozart with a paintbrush.” Judging of entries was based on originality, imagination and artistic merit.
Winners of the “Visa Olympics of the Imagination” art competition will attend the 1998 Winter Games as guests of Visa from February 5-11. The young artists will observe the Opening Ceremonies and be spectators at Olympic events such as Women’s Ice Hockey and Speed Skating. In addition, they will be involved in a number of Japanese cultural activities and exchanges including creating a gigantic mural painting with children from all around the world.
On the evening of February 7, Visa will unveil an outdoor exhibit of the children’s art and award the “first medals of the Olympic Games” as part of a special presentation on the Olympics ceremonial stage. The grand prize winner will earn a “Best of Show” award and earn a trip for two to the 2000 Olympic Games in Sydney, Australia.
Visa, a worldwide sponsor of the Olympic Games since 1986, is the official payment system of the 1998 Olympic Winter Games in Nagano, Japan, and will continue as the exclusive card and official payment system for the 2000 Olympic Games in Sydney, Australia.
Visa is the preferred payment brand and the largest consumer payment system worldwide. It plays a pivotal role in advancing new payment products and technologies to benefit its 21,000 member financial institutions, their cardholders, and the global economy. Visa is the only consumer payment system to facilitate $1 trillion worth of purchases of goods and services in a fiscal year. Visa’s nearly 600 million cards are accepted at more than 14 million worldwide locations, including 380,000 ATMs in the Visa/PLUS Global ATM Network. Visa’s Internet address is .
Although the 1998 Winter Olympic Games are six months away, the Olympic spirit is already taking hold as children throughout the nation gear-up for the Visa Olympics of the Imagination international art contest. Like the exceptional athletic skills of Olympic competitors, these children’s artistic talents and imaginations can take them all the way to the Nagano Games.
The Visa Olympics of the Imagination international art contest challenges schoolchildren between the ages of 9 and 13 years old to create artwork that shows a person they admire participating in an Olympic Winter Games sport. No restriction is placed on imagination, so family members, movies stars, political figures, teachers and, in fact, the whole spectrum of people familiar to the young artists are fair game to their paints and brushes.
In addition to the United States, contest entries are being collected in India, Japan, Korea, Australia, New Zealand, Canada, the Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland, Russia, Germany, Sweden and Norway. Each of the 14 different nations is tailoring the contest differently. In the United States, artwork will be collected between August 15, 1997 and November 3, 1997. The San Francisco-based not-for-profit organization, International Children’s Art Museum (ICAM) is coordinating outreach to 3,500 schools and the collection and judging of entries. Judging of entries from the United States — based on originality, imagination and artistic merit — will be conducted by a prestigious panel of judges from the art community, as well as representatives from ICAM and local celebrities.
Four children from the United States, along with one parent or guardian each, will attend the 1998 Winter Games in Nagano, Japan from February 5 – 11, 1998, as guests of Visa. While in Nagano, the winning artists from the United States will join 22 other children from around the world at the Opening Ceremonies and as spectators at Olympic events such as Figure Skating and Speed Skating. During their stay, the children will also be involved in a number of Japanese cultural activities and exchanges.
On the evening of February 7, 1998, Visa will unveil an outdoor exhibit of the children’s art and, at a special medal ceremony hosted by a past Winter Olympian, will award gold medals to the children and name one top winner whose artwork has been chosen from among the 1998 grand prize winners as “Best of Show” for artistic merit. The “Best of Show” winner will earn a trip for two to the 2000 Olympic Games in Sydney, Australia. Rachel Carter, 13, of New Zealand, was awarded “Best of Show” during the 1996 Atlanta Summer Games and will accompany this year’s winners to the Nagano Games.
Additional information on the Visa Olympics of the Imagination, including submission information, is available by calling ICAM at 415-772-9977, or by accessing the Visa Olympics of the Imagination Internet site, at http://www.visa.com/visakids/. The site features a teacher’s guide that integrates the contest into the classroom, artwork from past winners, a downloadable screensaver, and a children’s Olympic trivia quiz.
Founded in 1972, the International Children’s Art Museum’s mission of broadening viewer’s perspectives on art and world cultures through children’s art drives its annual exchange of over 10,000 pieces of children’s artwork worldwide and its permanent collection of children’s artwork at the International Children’s Art Museum in San Francisco.
Visa, a worldwide sponsor of the Olympic Games since 1986, is the official payment system of the 1998 Olympic Winter Games in Nagano, Japan, and will continue as the exclusive card and official payment system for the 2000 Olympic Summer Games in Sydney, Australia.
Visa is the preferred payment brand and the largest consumer payment system worldwide. It plays a pivotal role in advancing new payment products and technologies to benefit its 21,000 member financial institutions, their cardholders, and the global economy. Visa is the only consumer payment system to facilitate $1 trillion worth of purchases of goods and services in a fiscal year. Visa’s nearly 600 million cards are accepted at more than 14 million worldwide locations, including 370,000 ATMs in the Visa/PLUS Global ATM Network. Visa’s Internet address in