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Valentin Lazarov

Valentin Lazarov is a basketball referee and expert, who was enshrined as a technical official in the FIBA Hall of Fame on 19 June 2013.

In addition to his basketball career, Lazarov is also a civil engineer with more than 65 years of experience with projects all over the world. He currently works as the General Director of the Design Institute of the International Academy of Architecture.

Lazarov was born on 5 October 1931 in Sofia, the capital of Bulgaria, where he still lives with his family. He has two daughters and a grandson. Valentin Lazarov is a Honorary Citizen of Sofia because of his contributions as a civil engineer.

Lazarov was Enshrined as a technical official in the FIBA Hall of Fame on 19 June 2013.

For decades, Lazarov has been a General Director of Interproject and a Director at the International Academy of Architecture. During his long career, he has been responsible for the construction, design, and overall civil plan for embassies, sports facilities and living quarters around the world.

Construction and design of numerous sports facilities in the capital of Syria that include:

  • Basketball referee from 1950
  • FIBA referee (1958–1983)
  • Officiated more than 440 international games and finals: FIBA World Championships and European Championships, African Championships, Asian Championships, Korac Cups, Ronchetti Cups, Final Fours, etc.
  • Since 1980: FIBA International Instructor, conducted 336 FIBA and other International Clinics for referees, commissioners and instructors in 116 countries
  • FIBA Commissioner (1983–2007)
  • Member of FIBA Technical Commission since 1976
  • Vice-President Technical Commission FIBA Europe (1996–2004)
  • Official FIBA Interpreter of the Rules (1992–2005)
  • 10 Olympic Games participations
  • Author of 2 books on Basketball officiating and more than 20 articles in various sport magazines, Manuals for Commissioners, Manuals for National instructors, etc.
  • As a player: basketball team of French College (1946–1949)
  • Graduated from 2-year school for talented players (1950–52)
  • Captain of the basketball team of the Technical University in Sofia (1949–1954)
  • Honorary National Referee in Bulgaria (1958)
  • Honorary FIBA referee (1976)
  • Golden Whistle as best referee in Bulgaria
  • FIBA Cup - "Radomir Shaper" (2000)
  • FIBA Basketball Oscar (2002)
  • Honorary President of the Bulgarian Referees’ Association (2005)
  • FIBA Africa "Äbd-El-Azem Ashry" Cup (2006)
  • Honorary Citizen of Sofia
  • 6 highest Bulgarian professional awards for his projects/medals
  • Ministry of Foreign Affairs - Sofia
  • Bistrica government residency with covered swimming pool
  • Bulgarian Sports Federation building with covered swimming pool
  • Belite Brezi residential complex
  • 38 residential buildings in Sofia
  • Buzludja memorial
  • Bulgarian embassy in Kabul, Afghanistan
  • Bulgarian embassy in Havanna, Cuba
  • Samokov movie theatre
  • Rudartsi swimming pool
  • Pernik's culture home
  • Dimitrovgrad's culture home
  • Plovdiv's library
  • Koprivshtitsa - 30 houses in the renowned "Bulgarian old style"
  • Baramke sports complex with halls and football stadium
  • Mezze sports complex with covered swimming pool and football field
  • Ashrafie sports complex with football field and hotel
  • Bulgarian exhibition palace (rewarded with medal)


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