South Korean Olympic officials pulled an about-face over the weekend and named businessman Cho Yang-ho as the new leader of their troubled organizing committee for the 2018 Winter Games.
Cho heads the Hanjin Group, a transportation conglomerate that counts Korean Air among its holdings. He helped lead his country's bid to host the Games and now returns after the abrupt resignation of previous committee chairman Kim Jin-sun.
"I will devote myself to making the Pyeongchang Winter Olympics a successful one with my experience and the knowledge I gained when I worked as the chief of the Pyeongchang bidding committee,” Cho was quoted as saying in the Korea JoongAng Daily.
Kim resigned his post last week amid construction delays and questions about a government audit of the organizing committee. Word spread that Chung Chang-soo, a bureaucrat with no sports experience, was being considered as his replacement.
After South Korean media criticized the potential choice, Cho agreed to step in.
"Many people in and outside Korea recommended that I take this position, and I also wanted to keep the promise I'd made with the International Olympic Committee to work for a successful Olympics here," he said.