The World Boxing Organization (WBO) is one of the sanctioning organizations currently recognizing world boxing champions. Its offices are located in San Juan, Puerto Rico.
The WBO started after a group of Puerto Rican and Dominican businessmen broke out of the World Boxing Association's 1988 annual convention in Isla Margarita, Venezuela, disgusted by the WBA's rules and ratings systems.
The WBO's first president was Ramon Pina Acevedo of the Dominican Republic. Soon after its beginning, the WBO was staging world championship bouts all over the world. Their first title fight was for the junior welterweight title, between former world lightweight champions Hector "Macho" Camacho and Ray Mancini in Las Vegas. Camacho won by unanimous decision. In order to gain respectability, the WBO next elected former world light heavyweight champion José Torres of Ponce, Puerto Rico. Torres achieved his goal and left in 1996, giving way to Puerto Rican lawyer Francisco Varcarcel to succeed him as President. Varcarcel has been there since.
Nowadays, WBO world champions can unify their crowns against WBA and International Boxing Federation champions. For an unknown reason, the World Boxing Council still refuses to have their world champions take part in unification bouts with WBO champions. WBO champions generally struggle to be respected by the international media, even though they have beaten WBC, IBF, and WBA world champions constantly and proved to be better champions that those of the other organizations.
The WBO gained notoriety in 2001 after it twice moved Darrin Morris up in its super middleweight (168 lb) rankings despite the fact that he was dead. Morris was #7 at the time of his death and #5 when the WBO discovered the error. Varcarcel said "we obviously missed the fact that Darrin was dead. It is regrettable." One week after British newspaper The Independent broke the story, one of the three men ranking the boxers, Gordon Volkman, still hadn't heard that Morris was dead. In addition, Morris had only fought once in three years, beating a boxer with 15 wins in 78 fights.  (http://espn.go.com/boxing/columns/graham/1097210.html)
WBO world champions have included: