By Brad Culp on 11/05/10 at 6:18 pm
Stephen Holmes will lead a new Board of Directors who will be counted on to play an integral role in ensuring the success of Canada’s triathletes beyond 2012. Holmes was re-elected to a new four-year term as president of Triathlon Canada at the not-for-profit sport organization’s recent Annual General Meeting in Edmonton.
Holmes, who took a lead role during his opening term in assembling one of the strongest and most professional Boards in the organization’s history that has been focused on good governance, fundraising and developing the sport of triathlon across the country, will now look to expand on the foundation of his work, while leading the Board of Directors until 2013.
“I take a lot of pride in the fact that we have developed a culture of quality with an accountable Board of Directors determined to achieve international high-performance excellence in triathlon, and who also play a leadership role in our sport’s communities across the country,” said Holmes, who added that recruiting quality-paid professional full-time sport and administrative leaders was a priority during his opening reign between 2005-09. “As a Board, we are going to work together over the next four years to focus on ensuring our athletes have access to the necessary funds and resources needed to win.”
Recognizing money is often driven by medals, Holmes and the Board of Directors, who will oversee all areas of the organization, will also be committed to growing the sport across Canada and achieving excellence at the international level on the playing field.
“Our sport has experienced tremendous growth since 2000, but we need to continue developing creative ways to find the next Simon Whitfield,” said Holmes, whose full-time career is a Barrister and Solicitor of the law firm Holmes and Company.“We need to be efficient with our resources and only send athletes who are competitive to international competitions, so that we can focus our resources and coaching on broadening the talent of our under-23 level athletes. If we achieve our plan, ideally we will see a lot more Simon’s on the horizon.”
During his opening four-year term, Holmes hired the organization’s first executive director at the national office in Toronto, improved budgeting systems, and maintained a financially strong organization. As a result, Triathlon Canada has developed into a professionally-run organization that has increased its funding base through sponsorship.
Holmes and the team at Triathlon Canada were also instrumental in leading the growth of participation levels at the sport by implementing major programs including: a Long Term Athlete Development Model; Canada hosting two World Championship events; improving management services to age group athletes competing at World Championships; inclusion of triathlon at Canada Summer Games in 2009; and ensuring all aspects of the sport are friendly to athletes with a disability.
“We have come a long way in the last four years, but we cannot stop here. We need to continue to build on this success in order to lead our sport to greater achievements in the future,” said Holmes. “One of our biggest challenges is going to be raising the financial resources to achieve excellence but I am confident we will achieve our goals with the exceptional people we have in place.”
Holmes and his Board of Directors have four core strategies they will focus on over the next quadrennial including: national team program from the grassroots to high-performance sport level; development system at the national training centres, development team and talent identification; coaching programs; and national championships.
A high-performance athlete himself growing up, Holmes competed in a variety of university sports prior to representing Canada on eight age group triathlon and duathlon teams that competed at the World Championships. He has also competed in an Ironman and has completed several marathons around the world.
Holmes joined Triathlon Canada’s Board of Directors as vice-president prior to becoming president in 2005. He is an executive of the Pan American Triathlon Congress and a former president of Triathlon British Columbia.
“I truly believe in giving back, and that charity is your rent on earth,” said Holmes. “For me, to make an influence on this sport that I love is awesome, and I am going to work very hard with our Board and staff to make a mark, and ensure we achieve excellence.”
Holmes will be joined on the Board of Directors from 2009-2013 by:
Stephen Holmes – President
Larry McMahon – Vice-President
Luc Landriault – Treasurer
Lori Ebbesen – Secretary General
Carolyn Murray – Athlete Representative
Sue Ironside – Provincial Governing Body (PGB) Representative
Directors at Large
Meyrick Jones – Chair
Mike Ellis – Chair
Debb Brethauer – Saskatchewan/Manitoba
Dan Gautreau – Atlantic
Geneviève Pellerin – Ontario/Quebec
Bill Hallett – Past-President (non-voting)