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The names appearing below are just a fraction of the Canadian women of accomplishment. Check out The Famous Canadian Women 's section ON THE JOB  which contains mini profiles of 1900 Canadian Women of Achievement.

Sports Personalities    

Lela Brooks Born February 7, 1908, Toronto, Ontario. Died September 12, 1990, Owen Sound, Ontario. Her parents enjoyed winter sports and encouraged their daughter in her pursuit of speed skating. Without a coach or a planned training program. she would take her love the the sport to the highest competition allowed to women at the time. She was the 1st woman admitted to the Old Orchard Skating Club in Toronto. From 1923 to 1935 she would be called the "Queen of the blades." She won more that 65 championships fro the provincial level to world championships. In 1924 she earned 19 titles including 3 Canadian titles and three international titles. In 1924 alone she broke 6 world records and by 1927 the teen held 2 world championships titles.  She was the 1st Canadian woman world champion. She dominated events from the short 220 yard events to the one mile event (1600 m) She participated in the 1932 Olympics at lake Placid only to place 4th overall. Her time in the 1500 m heats was 2:54;o was more than 15 seconds under the official record but could not be recognized because she skated under the North American mass start rules!  While she qualified for the 1936 Olympics she decided to retire and not to participate. Later that year she married Russ Campbell and the couple settled in Owen Sound, Ontario. In 1972 she was inducted into the Canadian Speed Skating Hall of Fame and the Canadian Sports Hall of Fame.  Source: Canadian Sports Hall of Fame Accessed 2001.

 
Henrietta "Hettie" Loetitia Tuzo Wilson. (née Tuzo) Born Victoria, British Columbia May 6, 1873. Died January 11, 1955.Ottawa, Ontario  She was the first Canadian born woman mountaineer. A founding member of the Alpine Club of Canada she had a real passion for climbing. In 1906 she was the 1st  woman to ascend Peak seven of the Valley of the Ten Peaks near Moraine Lake and bordering the provinces of British Columbia and Alberta.  In 1907 Peak Seven was renamed Mount Tuzo in her honour. She stopped climbing in 1907 when she was 34 years old. She moved to Ottawa, Ontario  with her husband, John Amistead Wilson, a well established Scottish engineer, to raise their family. In 1928 she was elected president of the National Council of Women, still climbing the mountains set up in front of women by society. She was also an active volunteer with the Red Cross The Ottawa Women's Canadian Club. and a proponent of the League of Nations. She also found time to write for the Canadian Geographical Journal. She was presented with the King's Jubilee Medal in 1935 and in 1937 the King's Coronation Medal. John Tuzo Wilson, her son became a well known Canadian geologist in the area of continental drift and plat tectonics. Sources: "Mrs. Wilson Familiar Figure" by Madge Macbeth, Ottawa Citizen August 17, 1957. ; Off the Beaten Track; women adventurers and mountaineers in western Canada by Cyndi Smith. Coyote Books, 1998.
 

Ethel Catherwood. Born Hannah, North Dakota, U.S.A.  April 28,  1908. Died September 26, 1987, Grass Valley, California, U.S.A.. When she was an infant her family moved to Saskatchewan and settled in Saskatoon. Growing up she excelled in sports enjoying both baseball and track and field. Her prowess in the high Jump took her to Toronto.  Ethel was on the 1928 Canadian Women's Olympic team, known as the "Matchless 6" .  the first Olympic games to allow women to compete. She won a gold medal for Canada in the high jump when she cleared 5 feet 2 inches (1.588m). She was dubbed the Saskatoon Lily by the press who were quite taken not only by her efforts on the track but also by her beauty. In 1930 she won Gold again in High Jump and Javelin at the British Empire Games. In an era when it was not commonly accepted that young women should be ladylike and not excel in sports, Ethel retired from sports in 1930. She had offers from Hollywood to appear in movies but she turned down the silver screen for a course in business and studies in piano. She would marry and move to California never to compete in sports again. In 1955 she was inducted into the Canadian Sports Hall of Fame. Sources: Canadian Encyclopedia Online Accessed 2001 ; Canadian Sports Hall of Fame. online. Accessed 2001. .

Myrtle Cook. Born January 5, 1902, Toronto, Ontario. Died March 18, 1985, Elora, Ontario.  Myrtle had always enjoyed sport and was well rounded by playing tennis, ice hockey, basketball, bowling, cycling and canoeing. It was however her prowess in track and field that brought her to the spotlight. In 1923 she helped establish the Toronto Ladies Athletic Club, the 1st of its kind in Canada. Later she would as the club's  Director of Athletics. In 1928 she was a member of the 1st Canadian women's Olympic Team that came to be known as the 'Matchless Six'. Disqualified for false starts in the 100 meter event she ran on the relay team and won Gold.  For all the medal they earned the team came home to a hero's welcome. In 1929 she began a 40 year career as a sports journalist writing a weekly column the "Women's Sports Light" with the Montreal Star Newspaper. She helped establish the Mercury Athletic Club in Montreal in 1932. Myrtle  was even called upon to coach the Montreal (Men's) Baseball team in running basis.  'She also would hold national and British Empire Games medals. She married sports journalist Lloyd McGowan. From 1932 through 1972 she worked on the British Empire/Commonwealth Games committees. She was involved in a total of 11 Olympic Games either as an athlete, coach, manager, administrator and reporter. In 1976 she hosted Hospitality Suite for Canadian Olympians for the Olympic Club of Canada. In 1949 she was inducted into the Canadian Olympic Hall of Fame and the Canadian Sports Hall of Fame in 1955. In 1974 as a reporter her name appears in the Quebec Sports Hall of Fame. Athletics Canada awards an annual Myrtle Cook Trophy to young Athelete of the year.  Sources Celebrating Women's Achievements; Myrtle Cook. National Library of Canada. Online. Accessed 2001 ; Canadian Encyclopedia. Online Accessed 2001.

 

Fanny “Bobbie” Rosenfeld. Born Russia December 28, 1903. Died November 14, 1969.  In 1950 she was declared Canada’s woman athlete of the half century.  She was a member of the 1928 Olympic team. These were the first Olympic Games to allow women to compete. She brought home a silver and gold medal for Canada! She is a member of the Canadian Sports Hall of Fame.

 

Ethel Smith. Born December 31, 1907.  She teamed with Bobbie Rosenfeld, Myrtle Cook and Jane Bell to win the gold medal in the 400m relay at the 1928 Olympic games, the fist games that allowed women to compete. She also won the bronze medal in the 100m sprint at the same games. A natural athlete she excelled at basketball and softball as well as track and field.  She is a member of the Canadian Sports Hall of Fame.

 

Phyllis Munday   (née Jarnes) Born 1894. Died 1990. This woman has a mountain named for herself and her husband Don. Mount Munday is the highest peak in the Waddington Range of the Canadian Rockies. A competent climber she and Annette Buck in 1924 became the first women to reach the summit of Mount Robson, the highest peak in the Canadian Rockies. While she would enjoy climbing more than 100 peaks in the Rockies she was more than a mountaineer. She was a scientist, cartographer, naturalist, humanitarian and adventurer. In 1973 she received the Order of Canada for her pioneering efforts in these fields and for her dedicated service to the Girl Guides, St. Johns Ambulance and the Alpine Club of Canada. In 1992, Canada Post issued a stamp with Phyllis Munday on it as part of its Legendary Canadians series.

 

Jean Wilson Born Glasgow, Scotland July 19, 1910. Died September 3, 1933. In 1931 she was the North American indoor speed skating champion.  At the 1932 Olympics she was Canada’s first  women’s speed skating gold and silver medals  when speed skating was a demonstration sport. Jean won the 500m race in 58 seconds and came second in the 1500 m event.  At only 23 years of age she died from a progressive muscular disease. She was inducted into the Canadian Sports Hall of Fame in 1955.

 
Barbara Ann Scott.  Born Ottawa, Ontario 1928.Died Amelia Island, Florida, U.S.A. September 30, 2012.  One of Canada’s best remembered sports personalities, Barbara Ann  won the Canada's first gold medal in figure skating in the Olympic Games of 1948 on an outdoor rink in St Moritz, Switzerland. She won the Lou Marsh Trophy in 1945, 1948, 1948 as Canada's top athlete.  She married Thomas Van Dyke King and lived in the U.S.A.. She remained involved in figure skating as a judge promoting her sport and encouraging many others to partake in the sport.  The Barbara Ann Scott doll that came out shortly after the games did not really look too much like the young skater but it is today a very highly prized collectors item.
 
Winnifred "Winnie" Frances Roach-Leuszler (née Roach) Born Port Credit, Ontario February 3, 1926. Died May 2004, Surry British Columbia. . A long distance swimmer of international acclaim she started swimming when she was 3 years old. At 9 years of age she won her first medal as a competitive swimmer and she never looked back. She would go on to win local, provincial, national, North American and international medals throughout her career. As a teen she won the tree mile (1.8 km) swim at the Canadian National Exhibition in Toronto defeating even the male competitors. In 1944 she was labeled Canada's All Round Athlete of the year. That same year she joined the Canadian Women's Army Corps and was dominating Army, Navy and Air Forces sporting championships. In 1946 she met and married Morris Leuszler and Air Force Officer and while  three months pregnant, she won the 5 mile World Swimming Championship. While four months pregnant in 1949 she was second in the same event. The couple would have five children. On August 16, 1951 she became the first Canadian woman to swim the English Channel. She came home to a ticker tape parade in Toronto! In 1954 she entered the swim across Lake Ontario with Marilyn Bell but was forced from the event with problems with her guide boat. In the 1950's she was lured to baseball and in 1957 she was Canada's first female baseball umpire. In 1996 she was inducted into the Canadian Forces Sports Hall of Fame. In 1999 she received the Order of Ontario and was inducted into the Ontario Swimming Hall of Fame . Sources: Canadian Sports Hall of Fame Online . Accessed 2005. ; Herstory: A Canadian Woman's Calendar 2008. Coteau Books 2007
 

Lucille Wheeler  Born January 14, 1935. Lucille first skied when she was two years old! At 12 she was the national junior ski champion and named to the Canadian National Ski Team at 14!. In 1956 she won bronze at the Olympic Games and became the first ever Canadian Olympic ski Medalist. In 1958 she won both the downhill and giant slalom event at the World Championships. She is a member of the Canadian Sports Hall of Fame.

 

Marilyn Bell. Born Toronto, Ontario October 19, 1937. It was September in 1954 when a 16-year-old Toronto Girl entered the Canadian National Exhibition sponsored marathon swim race across Lake Ontario. She was the only entrant to actually finish the 32-mile race. It took 21 hours! She was the first to successfully swim Lake Ontario. She is a member of the Canadian Sports Hall of Fame. She attended university and married and lives in the United States where she was teacher for 20 years . A back injury forced Mrs. Di Lascio to give up swimming a few years ago. She enjoys coming home to Canada for visits as often as she can.

 

Frances Dafoe -Mellick. Born January 17, 1929, Toronto , Ontario. In 1952 she and her partner Norris Bowden (1926-1991) placed second in the Pairs event at the figure skating championships. They would go on to place 1st a title they would hold through to 1955. In the 1952, their 1st Olympic appearance the couple place 5th . It was said that their style of skating featuring imaginative lifts and jumps was considered too “athletic” for the European judges. In 1953 they became the 1st Canadians to win the World Pairs Figure skating and they repeated another world win in 1954. They would hold the North American Championships titles from 1953-1956. In 1955 the pair were inducted into the Canada’s Sport Hall of Fame.  In the Cortina d’Ampezzo Olympics in 1956 they earned a silver medal. In 1958 the couple were inducted into the Canadian Olympic Hall of Fame. After her retirement from completion Frances had a successful career as a fashion designer. She remained involved in her sport as a judge, team leader and of course she enjoyed designing costumes for such Canadian greats as Toller Cranston. In 1991 she was inducted as a member of the Order of Canada. In 1993 the pair were inducted into the Skate Canada Hall of Fame. Source: Canada’s Sports Hall of Fame Online (Accessed January 2013)

 

Petra Burka. Born Amsterdam, The Netherlands November 17, 1946.  At the age of 15 she became the first Canadian to complete the triple salchow jump in competition. .1965 she won the Canadian, North American and world championships and was the Canadian athlete of the year.

 

Irene Margaret  MacDonald. Born November 22, 1933. Brought up in an orphanage in Hamilton, Ontario she reigned as Canada’s champion diver from 1951-1961. She won medals at the 1954 and 1958 Commonwealth Games and in 1956 she won Canada’s first Olympic diving medal, a bronze. She became a dedicated administrative supporter to the Canadian Diving fraternity.  She is a member of the Canadian Sports Hall of Fame, 1981, received the Order of British Columbia in 1991, was Female Athlete of the Year 1958, and won the YWCA Woman of Distinction for sport in 1998. The Irene MacDonald Fund was established for the support of children in diving.

 

Anne Heggtveit.  Born January 11, 1939. A member of a skiing family, Anne, came to international attention at the age of 15 when she won the 1954 Holmenkollen Giant Slalom event in Norway, the youngest winner in the events’ 50 year history.  At the 1960 Squaw Valley Olympics she won an Olympic Gold Medal for Canada. In that same year she won the giant slalom and combined women’s alpine titles the first time ever by a non European.

 
Nancy Greene.  Born Ottawa, Ontario 1943. A skier of determination, Nancy won the 1967 World Cup and dominated the racing scene the next year as well winning Canada's first Olympic gold  medal in the giant slalom and a silver medal in the slalom at the Olympic games as well as her second World Cup.  She was awarded the Order of Canada in 1967 and named Athlete of the year in 1968.  She is a member of the Canadian Sports Hall of Fame.
 

Sandra Post. Born Oakville, Ontario June 4, 1948. She became Canada’s first woman professional golfer in 1968 and won the Ladies Professional Golf Association Championship at Sutton Massachusetts that same year. In 1979 she was Canada’s Athlete of the Year. In 2004 Sandra became a Member of the Order of Canada.

 
Elaine Tanner-Watt  Born Vancouver, British Columbia February 22, 1951.  When she was 6 her family moved to California where she took naturally to swimming. Back in Vancouver she joined the Dolphin Swimming Club. Standing 4’9” She became known as  “Mighty Mouse” for her swimming prowess, versatility and speed. At 15 years of age she was Canada’s outstanding athlete of the year, the youngest person to ever receive the Lou Marsh Trophy.   She holds 4 gold medals from Commonwealth Games 1966, plus 3 silvers and broke 2 world records!  She was the 1st Canadian Woman to ever win 4 gold. In 1967 she won 2 gold and 3 silver medals in the Winnipeg  Pan-American Games and broke 2 more world records. At the Mexico Olympic games in 1968 she provided Canada with 2 individual silver medals and a relay bronze medal. She is the 1st person ever to win 3 medals in a single Olympic Games and the 1st Canadian female swimmer to win a medal. . However all Canada asked “Why did you not win gold?”. The weight of not winning gold for Canada was the beginning of a downslide in life. At just 18 she retired from competition.    In 1969 she received the Order of Canada and in 1971 she was inducted into Canada's Sports Hall of Fame. In her personal life she would marry and have two children only to find herself divorced and distanced from her family. Suffering from anorexia and depression she felt that they would be better off without her.  She worked at bringing herself out of this dark period of her life in the late 1980’s earning a diploma in kinesiology from Simon Fraser University in 1986. However it was not until she met John Watt in 1988 that she was able to gain stable ground. The couple now have a classic car business. Elaine has also counseled youth to not make excessive expectations of themselves. She has also done some writing which she has published on her website. She wants her story to be a help and encouragement to others. She and John also work advocating water safety and drowning prevention in Ontario. In 2010 the Canadian Sport Advisory Council voted Elaine into the Top 50 greatest Canadian Athletes of all time. Read her story: questbeyondgold.ca  Sources: The Canadian Encyclopedia. - online.  Information provided by Thomas Brandenberg.: aquestbeyondgold.ca The Elaine Tanner-Watt website (Accessed January 2013)
 

Debbie Brill.  Born Mission, British Columbia 1953. A track and field athlete originated the reverse jumping style called the "Brill Bend" in high jumping. She was the first North American woman to clear the 6-foot/1.83 meter barrier. She won several medals in international events. She is a Member of the Order of Canada.

 
Catherine Priestner-Allinger née Priestner. Born Windsor , Ontario May 27, 1956. She joined the national speed skating team in 1971 and that same year she won gold and silver medals at the Canada Winter Games. She was a member of the 1972 winter Olympic team but it was not until she spent more time in international competitions winning podiums that she would stand on the Olympic podium. In 1976, at the Innsbruck Olympic Games she became the first Canadian woman to win an individual medal with a silver in the 500 metre event. In 1975 she was Calgary’s Athlete of the year and in 1976 she was inducted into the Alberta Hall of Fame and received the Governor General’s Award of Excellence. In 1981 she was inducted into the Canadian Speed Skating Hall of fame. After retiring from competition she established a successful career as an Olympic television commentator with the CBC and CTV. She worked as an organizer for the 1988 Calgary Winter Olympics and with the 2002 Salt Lake City Winter Olympics.
 

Dorothy Lidstone Born August 16, 1938. She enjoyed learning her sport of archery. She excelled and became the first Canadian World Champion in Archery in 1969. Her winning score broke the previous record set in 1963 by 100 points. Dorothy has retired from competitive archery but was an active support in setting up the family archery business that included designing, developing, and manufacturing Canadian made archery equipment. 

 
Jocelyn Bourassa Born Shawinigan Quebec. May 30, 1947. Jocelyne embraced sports all through her childhood. She attended the University of Montreal and then the University of Wisconsin in the U.S.A. She enjoyed an active sports life at both universities staring in basketball, volleyball, skiing, and track and field. During her years at Wisconsin she earned the nickname “Frenchy”. Her interest in golf actually stared in the early1960’s when she was a caddy for her brother Gilles. She earned the Quebec provincial junior championships in 1963-1965 and she was hooked for life on competitive golf. She would win provincial amateur championships, the Canadian ladies amateur championships in 1965, and 1971. She was a member of the Canadian team winning the World Cup in Spain in 1971 and then on to win the New Zealand amateur title. In 1972 she turned pro and earned the honour of “Rookie of the Year” in the Ladies Pro Golf Association. She was the first woman to be named as the Quebec Athelete of the Year and in 1972 was the Canadian Female Athelete of the year. From 1980 though 200 she was the executive director of the du Maurier Ltd. Classic which is one of the LPGA’s four major championships. She holds the Royal Order of Merit of Canada and in 1996 she was inducted into the Canadian Golf Hall of Fame. Sources: Who’s who in Canadian Sport by Bob Ferguson, (Scarborough: Prentice Hall ) : Royal Canadian Golf Association. Canadian Golf Hall of Fame www.rcga.org/hall_of_fame (accessed February 2009)
 

Lucille Lessard. Born 1957.  Introduced to the sport of archery by her schoolteachers she became a devoted competitor. She won her first national championship in 1974 and successfully defended her title five times.  In 1974 she became the first Canadian to wing the World Field Archery Championship, she was the youngest world Champion up to this point in time.

 

Cathy Townsend. Born June 8, 1937.  In 1975 she was the first Canadian woman to win the Bowling Cup. During her trip to these world games her equipment and clothing were lost in transit and she had to obtain a new bowling ball and special shoes required for a left handed bowler!  She is a member of the Canadian Sports Hall of Fame.

 
Cindy Nicholas. Born Toronto, Ontario August 20,1957.  At 16 years old Cindy bettered the record for swimming Lake Ontario. In 1975 she swam the English Channel in record-breaking time. In 1977 she became the first woman to complete a double crossing of the English Channel  She would go on to swim the Channel 18 more times including 5 two-way trips! Her honorary title was Queen of the Channel.  She received the Order of Canada in 1979. She is a member of the Canadian Sports Hall of Fame. She was inducted into the Ontario Sport Legends Hall of Fame in 2003.
 
Pat Messner. Born Hamilton, Ontario March 17, 1954. This former Girl Guide was the first Canadian woman to win a world championship in waterskiing in 1979. She is also the first Canadian woman to win an Olympic medal in her sport. Pat won a bronze Olympic medal in the 1972 Olympic Games in Munich, Germany. She holds 19 Canadian titles and 20 national records. She is also the first Canadian woman to have won the United States Master’s waterskiing titleShe is the founder of the Water Ski and Wakeboard Canadian Hall of Fame. In her spare time she has a career as a high school teacher, musician and paramedic. She was inducted into the Order of Canada in 1980, the youngest Canadian woman to ever receive this honour.
 
Sue Holloway . Born May 19, 1955. Sue was a four time Olympian competing in 1976 in Cross Country Skiing and Kayak, 1980 and Kayak again in 1984 where she took Silver and Bronze medals. Although Canada withdrew from the Moscow Olympics in 1980 she was the appointed Olympic flag bearer. She was the first Canadian woman to ever compete in both winter and summer Olympic Games in the same year. She and her husband, former Olympian Greg Joy, now work together as motivational speakers.
 
Sylvie Bernier. Born Quebec City, Quebec January 31, 1964. Sylvie was the first Canadian to win a medal in Olympic Diving.  She won the gold in the 3-meter springboard diving in the 1984 Olympics in Los Angeles. She is a member of the Canadian Sports Hall of Fame.
 
Carolyn Waldo Born Montreal, Quebec December 11, 1964. After nearly drowning at the age of 3 years she took 7 years to overcome her fear of the water. In the 1984 Olympics she captured Canada’s first medal, a silver, in synchronized solo swimming! At the World Aquatic Championships she and partner Michelle Cameron won gold and Carolyn also took gold in the solo event.  In the 1988 Olympics she won Canada’s first gold in solo and again with Michelle won gold in duet.  She became the first Canadian woman to win 2 gold medals at one Olympics. She currently perusing a career in sports broadcasting and works for television station in Ottawa, Ontario.
 
Tanya Dubincoff. Born Winnipeg, Manitoba. November 7, 1969. At four years of age she took the training wheels from her bicycle. She has won the Canadian National track cycling championship 16 times! She has won four gold medals at the Pan Am Games and has represented Canada in 3 Olympics. She was personally disappointed in her effort placement in Sydney's Olympics but she knew that retirement from competition was her future. In 1993 she was the first Canadian woman to win a cycling world championship and in that same year was first in World Cup standings. Tanya has since opened her own café, the Sugar Gallery Café and she has taken a position with The Olympic Oval in Calgary. She uses her communications skills and acts as a bridge between athletes and the media. What she gets most satisfaction from, however, is training young cyclists.
 
Anne Ottenbrite.  Born May 12, 1966.  She was the first Canadian woman to win an Olympic gold medal in swimming. She won the medal in 1984 in the 200m-breastroke event. At the same games she won sliver in the 100m breaststroke and played a key role in the 400m-medley relay team that won bronze.  She is a member of the Canadian Sports Hall of Fame.
 
Linda Thom.  Born Hamilton, Ontario December 30, 1943. She is a strong and highly motivated Olympic medalist. She first became interested in shooting as a child, when she learned the basics of the sport from her shooting enthusiast father. She successfully entered pistol competitions in 1969. By the mid 1970's she concentrated on her career as a chef and on family life. She took up the challenge of shooting again when it was announced that women would compete in this event in the Olympic Games.  Her pistol individual gold medal in the 1984 Los Angeles games was the first for a Canadian women and the first gold medal for a Canadian woman since 1928. Linda felt that the Gold Medal belonged to all the people of Canada, and she carried it with here wherever she went so that people could see and touch the medal for themselves. Linda is the first pistol shooter included into the Canadian Sports Hall of Fame. She is also a member of the Ottawa Sports Hall of Fame and the Canadian Amateur Sports Hall of Fame. In 1985 she received the Order of Canada.
 
Helen Vanderburg.  Born Calgary, Alberta January 12, 1959.  A synchronized swimmer who won the 1973 Canadian Junior Championship. By 1977 she placed first at the Pan Pacific Games and swept the Canadian championships with 6 gold medals.  In 1978 she became  the first Canadian to win the world championship with gold medals in the  solo and duet events.  In 1979 she defeated 90 competitors to win the solo title at the world aquatic championships.  She was inducted into the Canadian Sports Hall of Fame in 1983.
 
Gail Greenough.  Born Edmonton, Alberta July 13, 1960.  She took up equestrian sports at age 11.  She joined the Canadian Equestrian Team in 1983 and in 1986  became the first Canadian and first woman to win the world show jumping championships.  She is a member of the Order of Canada. 
 
Sharon Adele Wood. Born Halifax, Nova Scotia May 18, 1957. One might say mountaineering is in her blood. In the spring of 1986 she became the first woman from the Western hemisphere to stand on top of the world on Mt. Everest. She was 17 years old!!! On a smaller scale she was part of an all woman team to navigate to the top of Mt. Logan.  She enjoys teacher her sport to others when she is not working as a helicopter ski guide.
 
Kerrin Lee-Gartner.  Born Rossland, British Columbia September 21, 1966.  She grew up in Rossland B.C. and became a member of the elite group of skiers to hold an Olympic Gold medal.  This medal was the first in history for a Canadian (male or female) on the downhill event in an Olympic games.
 
Vicki Keith Munro. Born Winnipeg, Manitoba February 26, 1961.  A superb marathon swimmer, she would use the butterfly stroke to swim into the record books both nationally and internationally and all for the benefit of charity.  In 1985 she swam her first world-record crossing of Lake Ontario. In 1988 she became the first person to swim all five Great Lakes. She also conquered the harbour in Sydney, Australia, the English Channel between Europe and England, and Juan de Fuca Strait on the North American west coast and Lake Winnipeg in the geographical heart of Canada. He sponsorships would earn hundreds of thousands of dollars most of which went to Variety Village to benefit disabled children. She was named a Member of the Order of Canada in 1992, earned the Variety Club Heart Award in 1989, B’Nai Brith Woman of the Year for 1989 and the Vanier Award in 1989 and was inducted into the Terry Fox Hall of Fame. She has been the recipient of over 41 awards and recognitions, including a the naming of Vicki Keith Point, the place that she began  her five crossings of Lake Ontario. Although retired from long distance swimming in 1991, Vicki hit the waters again in 2005 to raise awareness and funds for children with disabilities.
 
Manon Rhéaume.  Born Lac Beauport, Quebec February 26, 1972.  The daughter of a hockey coach, she began to play at the age of 5 years. She loved hockey and played well. She was the first girl to play in the Annual Quebec Peewee Hockey Tournament.  She went on to become the first woman to play professionally. She was goalie with the Tampa Bay Lightening of the National Hockey League. If you want the whole story read Manon: alone in front of the net.  She is still active in her sport today teaching young girls how to play the sport she loves. Her web site is located at; http://manonrheaume.com
 
Susan Nattrass.  Born Medicine Hat, Alberta November 5, 1950. She was taught to shoot by her father when she was 17 and by 19 she defeated 1300 men at an international shoot in Nevada! In the 1976 Olympics in Montreal she was the only woman entered in the trap shooting event. In the 1990 Commonwealth Games she became the first woman to be entered in a shotgun event. She has set 4 world records and has been World Champion on 7 occasions. She is a member of the Canadian Sports Hall of Fame.
 
Claudia Kerckhoff-van Wijk proved herself a worthy competitor in a male dominated sport. She held the Canadian Women’s Whitewater Kayaking Championship position for an entire decade from 1974-1984. She was the first woman and the youngest competitor to participate in the grueling ten sections of the Coureurs des bois gold category in the Canadian Ski Marathon.  She now owns and operates Madawaska Kanu Centre which is the first kayak and canoe school in North America.
 
Lori Fung. Born Vancouver, British Columbia February 21, 1963. She has a passion for her Rhythmic Gymnastics. She started at the British Columbia Rythmicka Club. She was an able student and a good listener. These talents paid off when in 1983 she became Canadian Champion and later that same year the Four Continents Gold medalist . She would during her competitive career be Grand Champion of Canada seven times. To the media she was a relative unknown contender, yet she won gold at the 1984 Los Angeles Olympics when the sport was inaugurated into the Olympic Games. Retired from competition, she remains a valued coach in her sport. She also works for Canadian charities in such positions as Chairperson of the Canadian Cancer Society. She is a recipient of the Order of Canada and a member of Canada's Sport Hall of Fame
 
Myriam Bedard Born December 22, 1969.  While with cadets she took up biathlon and entered her first competition on rented skis. In 1991 she was the first Canadian to win a World Cup in Biathlon. She won a bronze medal in the Olympic games in 1992 .  The next year it was a  a gold at the World Championship. She went n to win gold for the 7.5 km inaugural event, and a gold in the 15 km event at the 1994 Lillehammer Olympics.  She was the first non-European to win gold in Biathlon.  She received the Lou Marsh Trophy as Canada’s outstanding athlete in 1994. She is a member of Canada's Sports Hall of Fame.
 
Shirley Cameron. Shirley played hockey on outdoor rinks when the girls teams shoved newspapers in their socks as shin pads. It would be several years before girls’ teams would have access after 11:30 p.m. on indoor hockey rinks. She would play on team Canada at the 1st Women’s World Hockey Championships. She would skate for 20 years in competitive hockey. In 1972 she was a founding member of the Edmonton Chimos and with this team she would win 16 National Championships.  One year when she wanted to play in the national championships she could not get time off work so she called in sick. She was sanctioned by her boss when he saw her photo in the newspaper. She retired from competition in 1992 and turned tocoaching. The Cameron cup which is the prize for a 10 game series between teams in Alberta is named in her honour. She is considered the 1st superstar of women’s hockey in the modern era. Source: The Hockey Hall of Fame Time capsule Notable Women Hockey players , The Hockey Hall of Fame  Online (Accessed February 2014)
 
Charmaine Crooks. Born Jamaica. She emigrated to Canada when she was 6 years old. At 16 she took her favourite sport of running seriously and made the 1980 Olympic team. She would go on in her sport to win medals at the Olympics, Commonwealth and Pan American Games as well as the World Cup. She was time Canadian National Champion in the 400 and 800 metre event and was the first Canadian to break the to minute barrier for the 800 m distance. In 1996 she was Canada's flag bearer for the opening ceremony at the Olympics in Atlanta. She continued her Olympic commitment by being a founding member of the International Olympic Committee Ethics Commission and worked on the IOC Press Commission and the Culture and Education Committee. She received recognition for her community service with the 1992 Governor General's Award. It is no surprise to learn that she is working on the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Committee!!
 
Beth Leboff. Born Montreal, Quebec. It seemed that when she was growing up at her family cottage in the Laurentian Mountains of Quebec that all she wanted to do was water ski. Then she learned how to do it bare foot! She was hooked. The family found her a coach. She won the Canadian National Slalom event in 1991. In 1992 she swept gold in the overall category. She was the Quebec Water ski federation athlete of the Year for both 1991 and 1992. It was in 1992 she would become the first Canadian to win a world record elite title in barefoot water skiing. She accomplished this honour in grace and determination setting a new Canadian record in Women's jumping. She is currently practicing law in fort Lauderdale, Florida, U.S.A. where she is a mother of 2 children.
 
Beth Underhill. Born Guelph, Ontario September5, 1962. In 1991 this equestrian jumper won a double sliver medal at the Pan American Game. She also rode for the Canadian team which won an Olympic Silver Medal at Barcelona, Spain. In 1993 she was the first woman to win the Canadian World League. Her favourite jumping horse partner was named Monopoly, with who she won over one million in prize money!!
 

Chantal Peticlerc. Born Saint-Marc-des Carriéres, Quebec  December 15, 1969. This television host for Lotto Quebec has become the first woman Canadian star in the sport of wheelchair athletics. In the summer of 1995 she won 5 gold medals at the world championships for wheel chair athletics, and in 1996 she brought home 5 medal from the Paralympics.  Go ahead find out more about Chantal and other paralympians on the Internet.

 

Maryse Turcotte. In 1990, while a student in high school, she helped out at a sports event in weightlifting and she fell in love with the sport. In 1997 she made history by becoming the first woman in the America's to lift double her body weight. She has earned a silver medal at the 1998 World Championships, a gold medal at  the Pan American Games in 1999 and gold in both 2000 and 2001 College and University World Games. She placed forth in the Olympics in Sydney Australia.

 
Sandra Schmirler. Born Biggar, Saskatchewan June 11, 1963 Died March 2, 2000. Curling was her passion. She was a three time Canadian and World Champion.  The Schmirler team worked as a real sisterhood and dominated their sport for 6 years. In 1998 Schmirler  led her foursome, Joan McCuster, Jan Betker, Marcia Gudereit and Atina Ford  to the first ever Olympic gold medal in women's curling. She and her team are members of the Saskatchewan Sports Hall of Fame and she is a member of the Canadian Sports Hall of Fame.
 
Caroline BrunetBorn March 20, 1969. In March 1998, Caroline became the recipient of the Velma Springstead Award to become Canada's Outstanding Female Athlete of the Year. Her recognition began in 1995 when she won a gold and 2 silver medals at the World Championships. In Atlanta's Olympic Games in 1997 she claimed the silver medal. She swept the World Sprint Canoe Championships in 1997 when she won three gold medals which represented "a best ever" Canadian Kayak team performance.  Her gold medal  represented a first for a Canadian woman in a singles canoeing event. She also won a medal in the 2004 Olympics in Athens, Greece.
 
Marlene Streit. (née Stewart) Born Cereal, Alberta March 9, 1934. A powerful golfer she would win the Canadian ladies champion title 11 times between 1951 and 1973. She was the Canadian Female Athlete of the Year in 1951 and 1956. In 1967 she was inducted as an officer in the Order of Canada. During her golfing career she would win 24 Canadian Ladies Golf Association Championships and by 2003 she had a career total of 30 national or international championships with at least one championship each decade . She claimed her third U.S. Senior Women’s Amateur in 2003, the oldest person to ever triumph in that event. She is the only person to have won the Australian, British, Canadian and United States womens’ amateur championships!  She is a member of the Canadian Sports Hall of Fame and in 2004 she became the first Canadian member of the World Golf Hall of Fame.
 
Haley Wickenheiser. Born Shaunavon, Saskatchewan December 8, 1978. Team sports are her favourite. She played in competition in the World Junior Softball Championships in 1995. Then it was hockey. She played with a gold medal team at the 1997-99 World hockey Championships and the silver medal team at the 1998 Nagano Olympics. She was invited to play with the Philadelphia Flyers training camp which she found a great opportunity to learn at the NHL level. She has done studies science and the University of Calgary and was the first woman to have accepted a contract to play hockey on a men's team. She played her sport of hockey in Finland.
 
Beckie Scott. Born Vegreville, Alberta August 1, 1974. She began cross country skiing at the age of five.  She participated at the 1998 Winter Olympic Games in Nagano, Japan and the 2002 Winter Olympic Games in Salt Lake City, Utah. Scott won a gold medal in cross-country skiing. She originally finished third in the five-kilometer pursuit, but she was soon upgraded to the gold medal when winner and runner-up were disqualified for using darbepoetin, a performance-enhancing drug. She became the first Canadian and first North American woman to win an Olympic medal in cross-country skiing.  Beckie is equally well known for her outspoken stand on anti-doping and drug-free competition. She relentlessly challenged the International Ski Federation (ISF) to be more aggressive in its efforts to catch cheats. On March 29, 2005 Scott agreed to join the World Anti-Doping Agency’s athlete committee. Aware of the world outside of sport, she spearheaded a Canadian team challenge to donate all prize money won from the Continental Cup competition in British Columbia to the UNICEF efforts in Afghanistan.
 
Lori-Ann Muenzer. Born Toronto, Ontario May 21, 1966. Although at 5’10” she is the shortest in her family it was never a drawback. It seems she was always on her bicycle. In 1987 she began Road Racing at the Toronto Cycling Club. In 1994 she embraced Veledrome Racing and became a member of the National Cycling Team. She has accumulated 13 National titles and 11 World Cup medals during her career. She has also earned medal at the Commonwealth Games in 1998 & 2002. She made her debut at the Olympics in 200. At the Olympic Games in Athens in 2004 she became the first Canadian to win an Olympic gold medal in Cycling. Selected as the Canada’s Female Athlete of the year in 2004 she was also the 2005 winner of the Lois E. Hole Lifetime Achievement Award from the YWCA. After the 2004 Games she began her own business called Pure Momentum which seeks to find and promote a community of female speakers. She has published her own biography and a documentary both called One Gear, No Breaks. Nomination and Information submitted by Wayne Mackenzie.
 
Urszula Torkarska.  Born Poland 1963. She emigrated to Canada in 1988 and studied environmental design at the Ontario College of Art, Toronto, Ontario. In 1998 she visited the Mount Everest bas camp in Nepal where she was smitten with mountain climbing. In 2001 she joined an expedition up Mount Aconcagra, the highest peak in South America. Inspired by fellow climber, Peggy Foster, who was attempting to be the first Canadian woman to climb to the top of the seven tallest summits in the world she continued her climbing. In 2002 she climbed the highest peaks offered in Europe and Africa. She also claimed Mount Elbrus in Russia and Mount Kilimanjaro in Kenya. In 2004 it was Mount McKinley in North America and Australia’s mount Kosciuszko and even Vinson Massif in Antarctica that she conquered. She was turned by from the summit of Everest by storms. In June 2005 she and Peggy Foster made another attempt at Everest with Urszula the one to claim the top of the mountain. Urszula had become the first Canadian Woman to climb all seven of the world’s tallest peaks. Sources: Herstory: the Canadian Women’s Calendar 2007 Coteau Books, 2006 page 80: www.everstnews.com /everst2005/ … accessed June 2011.
 
Cassie Campbell. Born Richmond Hill, Ontario November 22, 1973. It seems as if Cassie has always loved to play hockey. As a youth she played in Calgary with the Oval X-Team In 1995 she as Captain of the University of Guelph team, The Gryphons, which she led to winning the Ontario University Championships. She earned her honours BA in Sociology in 1997. In 2000 she was named top forward in the Esso National Women’s Championships. In 2005 she was on the team winning the inaugural Western Women’s Hockey League cup. She was on the Olympic teams that won silver in 1998, and gold medals in 2002 and 2006. She is the only hockey captain (male or female) to lead her team to two Olympic Gold medals. She has also played in Seven World Championships and is the longest serving Hockey team captain to date. On October 14, 2006 she became the first woman to provide colour commentary on Hockey Night in Canada. She is the first woman hockey player inducted into Canada’s Sports Hall of Fame and into the University of Guelph Sports Hall of Fame in 2007. This was the same year she published her first book, H.E.A.R.T. which was written for youth showing what success is. As of 2011 she has been a member of 21 National Women’s team medal games that includes 17 gold Medals! No wonder the City of Brampton proudly named their Community Centre in her honour. In June 2011 she received an honourary degree from the university of Guelph. Cassie is married to Brad Pascal and the couple have one daughter. (c 2011) Sources: Canada’s Sports Hall of Fame: The Portico, University of Guelph Fall 2011.
 
Carol Huynh. Born November 16, 1980 New Hazelton, British Columbia. Her parents were refugees from Vietnam who were sponsored by the United Church of Canada. She and her sisters all enjoyed wrestling when growing up but she was the one who joined competitions. In 1998 she stared university studies at Simon Fraser and in 2007 studied at the University of Calgary in Alberta. In 2005 she married Dan Biggs, the son of a former wrestler. In the 2008 Beijing Olympics she won gold in the 48kg weight class women wrestling. It was a first gold medal for Canada in this sport and she had defeated a 3 time world champion to gain the medal. Source: United Church Observer www.ucobserver.org October 2008.
 
Lauren Woolstencroft. Born Calgary, Alberta November 24, 1981. Lauren was born missing both legs below the knees and missing her left arm below the elbow. This never held her back! She was taught how to ski when she was 4 years old. While she was exposed to learning other sports such as horseback riding she soon became bored with these other sports. She started ski racing as a teen of 14 when a friend convinced her to join the Alberta disabled Ski Team. She attended the university of British Columbia and earned a degree in electrical engineering. She is proud to work for BC Hydro. In 1998 she joined the Canadian Disabled Alpine Ski Team.  An accomplished participant in the Paralympics Games in 2002 she won 2 gold medals in Super G and Slalom as well as a bronze medal in Giant Slalom. That same year she was British Columbia’s Female Athlete of the Year also winning the Whang Youi Dai Award. Back at the 2006 Turin, Italy Paralympics Games there was a gold medal in Giant Slalom and Silver in the Super G. In 2007 during the International Paralympics Games she was named the Best Female Athlete and was inducted into the Terry Fox Hall of Fame. Although she though of retiring she returned to the 2010 Paralympics Games at Whistler, British Columbia to win 5 gold medals (Giant Slalom, Super G. Downhill, Slalom,& super combined.) She is the first Canadian to win 3 or more gold medals during a Paralympics Games. She was very proud to be the person to carry the Canadian Flag for the Turin Games closing ceremony. Source: Petro Canada. Paralympics School Program Lauren Woolstencroft http://paralympiceducation.ca accessed June 2011.
 
 

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