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Richmond hosting national coaching conference

Three day event wraps up on Saturday at Sheraton Vancouver Airport Hotel
Dr. James Makokis, proud a two-spirit Cree from Saddle Lake First Nation and winner (with husband Anthony Johnson) of The Amazing Race Canada (Season 7) is among the keynote speakers at the Coaching Association of Canada’s 2019 Petro-Canada™ Sport Leadership sportif conference in Richmond.

More than 500 delegates have converged in Richmond for the 2019 Petro-Canada™ Sport Leadership sportif conference — the nation’s annual conference for coaches, researchers, sport executives, and administrators.

The conference is organized by the Coaching Association of Canada™ (CAC) and runs from today until Saturday at the Sheraton Vancouver Airport Hotel.

Gathered under the theme of Mission: Resilience, delegates will discover new skills and strategies that will help their organizations respond effectively to new challenges such as concussion awareness, the need for greater diversity and inclusion, and the responsibility to protect their athletes and participants from abuse, harassment, and discrimination. 

Delegates will exchange hard-won lessons in achieving growth through adversity and make valuable professional connections that will take them and their respective organizations forward with confidence. In doing so, they will collectively reaffirm their commitment to their athletes, to their coaches, and to their organizations. 

“The performance that our athletes achieve in competition speaks to the level of perseverance and sesilience supported by expert coaching,” says Lorraine Lafrenière, Chief Executive Officer of the CAC. “Athletes and coaches must continually adapt. In turn, we need to adopt new organizational strategies to increase our own resilience to support them.”

Keynote speakers presenting at this year's conference come from varied backgrounds and experiences. They include:

Dr. James Makokis, Proud two-spirit Cree from Saddle Lake First Nation with a focus on Transgender people and underrepresented communities, and winner (with husband Anthony Johnson) of The Amazing Race Canada (Season 7).

-Pamela Jeffery, National Lead, KPMG Inclusion & Diversity Strategy Group.

-Henry Burris, three-time Grey Cup Champion and two-time Grey Cup MVP.

-Dr. Andy Van Neutegem, Director, Sport Science, Medicine and Innovation, Own The Podium.

-Norm O’Reilly, PhD, Assistant Dean and Professor of Executive Programs, University of Guelph 

-Bruno Guevremont, Canadian Armed Forces Veteran, Bell Let’s Talk Ambassador 

Other highlights include presentations from Natalie Abele and Shawna Lawson of viaSport British Columbia, members of the West Vancouver Sport Alliance, and Shelley Fried, of the University of Manitoba. 

The conference will be co-emceed by Manon Landry Ouellette, Executive Director of Coach New Brunswick, and Ian Mortimer, Director of Development at Canoe Kayak Canada. Both are highly experienced athletes, coaches, and sport administrators.

More than 80 of Canada’s top coaches will also be celebrated at the Petro-Canada Sport Leadership Awards Gala on Friday.