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Women in Sport Spotlight: May 2017


“Take the chance and put your hand up. Get involved and you’ll never regret it.”

Taking her own advice to heart, Tanya Donaldson has been, and continues to be, an irreplaceable contributor to amateur and high performance sport. Currently Manager of the Richmond Tennis Club, Tanya also wears a variety of different hats for BC Rugby as the Tournament Director for the Vancouver Rugby Festival and a Director for their Board. She’s also an active member on the Governance Committee and the Competition and Events Committee. In another rugby-related capacity, Tanya works with the Justice Rugby Club as their administrator.

Women in Sport Spotlight: April 2017


As the Manager of Program Development at BC Wheelchair Basketball Society (BCWBS), Makiko Harada would disagree with this particular definition of wheelchair basketball based on how the hard-hitting sport resonates with her. When asked to use one word to describe the sport, it’s simply the word “sport” that rings true. 

Women in Sport Spotlight: March 2017


In addition to triathlon, Loreen has made invaluable contributions to amateur sport in British Columbia as one of viaSport’s longest-standing Board members. This past year, Loreen actively participated in the comprehensive review of over 60 provincial sport organizations, helping to identify tangible solutions that would strengthen organizational readiness and capability. Her active voice on the Girls and Women Advisory Group has allowed for the strategic development and implementation of gender equity in sport and physical activity across the province. Put quite simply, Loreen has been, and continues to be, a relentless champion in the creation of opportunities for others to thrive through sport.

Right where I belong


60% of the human body. 75% of the human brain. 100% of Alexa Loo’s soul. As an athlete, Alexa was well acquainted with the thirst-quenching abilities of water. However, her familiarity with the liquid transcended beyond these basic properties. Immersing herself within its natural elements, Alexa competed in both swimming and rowing as a UBC Thunderbird. Her natural affinity with water eventually led her to the snow-covered mountains in Turin, Italy as a snowboarder on the national team. Needless to say, water satisfied Alexa Loo’s soul. 

The pieces we leave behind


Because programs didn't exist for children with intellectual disabilities to engage in sport, Eunice took it upon herself to hold a summer day camp in her very own backyard. Fifty years later, her camp has evolved into a global movement known as Special Olympics. Without her, 4.2 million athletes around the world would not be participating in sport today, including Special Olympics British Columbia (SOBC) athlete, Paige Norton.

From vulnerability to vigilance


These incidents may have occurred 15 years ago, but Elisabeth is aware of how negative experiences continue to linger in sport today. How the issue of bullying in sport goes beyond kids bullying one another, or the good athletes bullying the poor athletes. As the Manager of Inclusion at viaSport, Elisabeth has also seen and worked with a fair share of those in the sport sector exhibiting bullying behaviour. It’s hard for her to swallow, especially when adults should essentially know better.

Women in Sport Spotlight: January 2017


Canadian Olympic Committee President, Tricia Smith. Canadian Paralympic Committee CEO, Karen O’Neill. Own The Podium CEO, Anne Merklinger. Canadian Coaching Association CEO, Lorraine Lafreniere. viaSport CEO, Sheila Bouman.

At first glance, these names may not come off as being particularly striking. However, these names are a proud representation of how far Canadian women have come to hold pivotal positions in the sport world for Shaunna Taylor. Currently Executive Director for PacificSport Okanagan and a high performance sport consultant, Shaunna has dedicated her life to advocate the message of sport and all that it stands for.

Women in Sport Spotlight: December 2016


“Oh, she’s too young,” her parents promptly responded. They weren’t wrong either, as you have to be nine years old to participate in the program. However, who better to break this rule than the club manager himself? Since she was already there, the club manager insisted Sarah try it out.

Eleven years later, 17-year-old Sarah Daniels is on the other side of the glass and a dominant force in the curling scene.

Women in Sport Spotlight: November 2016


For BC-based sledge hockey athlete Peggy Assinck, taking public transport to the rink would be a dream. Paralyzed from the waist down, Assinck doesn’t have the same luxury of getting around as some of her able-bodied peers. There’s also a lot more to consider - is the hockey arena accessible? Can I get out onto the ice efficiently? Do I have access to a vehicle to transport all of my equipment?

Women in Sport Spotlight: October 2016


This month’s inspiring female role model in sport is senior national wrestling member, Justina Di Stasio. Read on to learn about how her participation in multiple sports as a child has contributed to her athletic success today.