Dan Thompson named to lead Skate Canada as CEO

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

OTTAWA, ON: A leading sport and strategic marketing specialist will take the helm of Skate Canada later this month. Dan Thompson will become the Chief Executive Officer of the national body responsible for teaching Canadians to skate and preparing athletes to compete at the highest levels of figure skating.

Thompson was named to the position by the Skate Canada Board of Directors. “Dan brings a true breadth of knowledge and skills to this leadership role,” said Skate Canada President Benoit Lavoie. “An Olympian himself, Dan understands the requirements of preparing athletes for elite competition. Combined with his marketing and management experience, we have a leader who can truly inspire the organization. We are also fortunate to have found an individual with strong organizational skills at the community level and experience dealing with governance issues at the board table. We are confident that Dan will be a terrific leader both for Skate Canada, and within the Canadian and international sport communities.”

Thompson, a seven-year member of Canada’s National Swim Team and Olympian, was to participate in the 1980 Olympic Summer Games, which were ultimately boycotted. He holds a Bachelor of Science, Physical & Health Education degree from the University of Toronto, and made the move into the corporate marketing world at the conclusion of his competitive swim career. Dan spent many years as a sponsorship marketing consultant with Lang & Associates and in the 90’s worked with the Canadian Figure Skating Association to create integrated broadcast sponsorship packages with CTV, develop the Champions Series of skating which became the ISU Grand Prix of Figure Skating Series, and launched the Champions on Ice figure skating tour. He then went on to lead one of Canada’s largest sponsorship marketing agencies, MacLaren Momentum. His most recent role as President, Canadian Tire Jumpstart Charities saw Dan guide the growth of Jumpstart into Canada’s largest private foundation dedicated to helping in-need kids participate in sport and recreation.

Dan is ready to take on the challenges of his new role. “I feel fortunate to have been given the opportunity to lead one of Canada’s truly great sports,” said Thompson. “It is one of the most professionally managed National Sport Organizations in the country and has an outstanding history of consistently producing World Champions and Olympic medallists. I look forward to applying my community and philanthropic experience to support and continue Skate Canada’s strong tradition of engaging communities at the local level through the work of its clubs and in particular the CanSkate program which strives to ensure that every Canadian learns to skate. With the Canadian Tire National Figure Skating Championships about to celebrate its 100th anniversary in 2014, there could not be a better time to join Skate Canada.”

“From a marketing perspective,” he continued. “Skate Canada is an iconic Canadian sport brand and one of the leading figure skating brands in the world. I feel fortunate to be given the opportunity to leverage this remarkable brand and build on the tremendous work of the skating community.”

Thompson will meet many of the Skate Canada members informally at its Annual Convention and General Meeting this weekend in Ottawa. He takes over his new position officially on Monday, June 17th.

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