OTTAWA – Swimming Canada’s Board of Directors has a new look after the organization’s Annual General Meeting Saturday in Ottawa.
Edmonton’s Cheryl Gibson was elected president, while the board welcomed Hugh Wakeham as its newest member.
Gibson, a Chartered Accountant and lawyer, is a partner at the law firm of Dentons Canada LLP, and has been recognized as a leading Canadian expert in the field of tax law. She is a Governor of the Canadian Tax Foundation and is a member of the Administration and Finance Committee of the World Anti-Doping Agency.
She was a member of the national swim team from 1974 to 1982 and won a silver medal in women’s 400m individual medley at the 1976 Summer Olympics in Montreal. Gibson was also a medallist at world championships, Commonwealth Games and Pan American Games, and her many accolades include induction to the Canadian Olympic Hall of Fame and Swimming Canada Circle of Excellence. She has been on the board since 2012 and previously served from 1983 to 1994.
“It’s exciting to come full circle, going from a swimmer to a board member to the president,” Gibson said. “It’s a real privilege to be able to give something back to the sport. We’ve had great leaders in Canadian swimming and I’m looking forward to following in their footsteps. It’s an Olympic year, and we had great results this summer. It’s an exciting time for swimming and it’s great to be part of that.”
David De Vlieger, re-elected to the board, decided to step down after five years at the helm. At the end of the meeting Swimming Canada CEO Ahmed El-Awadi presented him with a framed Swimming Canada T-shirt signed by the members of the 2015 national team.
“We want to thanks David for his hard work as president the last five years,” El-Awadi said. “He has been a tremendous representative of Canada and loves our sport. We’re now looking forward to Cheryl leading us for the future. She’s an accomplished Olympian, an accomplished professional, and a dedicated volunteer. She’s going to do a great job.”
Joining De Vlieger as re-elected directors were Leslie Cliff, Dean Crawford and John Hinds.
Meanwhile, Wakeham has been president of Wakeham & Associates Marketing Inc. since 1999. The agency provides sponsorship marketing consulting and sales services to corporations, sport and entertainment properties, and public assembly venues internationally. He completed a series of contracts for the Toronto 2015 Pan Am Games, including one involving the assessment of future sponsorship revenue potential for the new Pan Am Aquatics Centre.
Wakeham’s experience also includes managing sponsorship activation programs with the Anaheim Ducks, Los Angeles Kings, Los Angeles Galaxy, Canadian Soccer Association, and Alpine Canada. He has also led sponsorship sales campaigns for such organizations as Toronto Indy and the Vancouver Canadians baseball team, and secured naming rights for sporting venues such as the K-ROCK Centre and the Invista Centre. He is also a former competitive swimmer with the Burnaby Barracudas (Vancouver) and the Edmonton Master Swim Club.
The five elected directors will combine with incumbents Jim Shaw, Gibson, Yves Lorange and Kerry Mummery to form the nine-person board for 2015-2016.
Swimming news courtesy of Swimming Canada.