Pierre La­fontaine Named Cycling Canada CEO as Greg Mathieu Re­tires

Pedal Magazine - - Out In Front - BY JOHN SY­MON

Pierre La­fontaine has been hired as Chief Ex­ec­u­tive Of­fi­cer (CEO) for Cycling Canada, re­plac­ing Greg Mathieu, who re­tired af­ter serv­ing the or­ga­ni­za­tion for seven years. La­fontaine is widely ac­claimed as an in­no­va­tive leader with a wealth of in­ter­na­tional ex­pe­ri­ence, most re­cently as CEO at Cross Coun­try Canada since 2015. Pre­vi­ously, he was CEO and Na­tional coach of Swim­ming Nata­tion Canada from 200513, fol­lowed by two years as CEO of Cana­dian In­teruni­ver­sity Sport. A medal-win­ning per­former at Olympics, Par­a­lympics, World Cham­pi­onships, and the Pan Am, Para­pan Am and Commonwealth Games, he has built crit­i­cal re­la­tion­ships with key stake­hold­ers that in­clude Own the Podium, the Cana­dian Olympic Com­mit­tee and Cana­dian Par­a­lympic Com­mit­tee to de­velop world-lead­ing high-per­for­mance pro­grams.

“Pierre is an en­er­getic, pas­sion­ate and ex­pe­ri­enced leader who is a known per­former in the area of sport de­vel­op­ment,” said John Tolkamp, pres­i­dent of Cycling Canada, ad­ding that La­fontaine was hired fol­low­ing an ex­ten­sive na­tional search. “He will be counted on to lead our ex­cep­tional staff to­wards re­al­iz­ing the vi­sion of be­ing a lead­ing cycling na­tion by 2020.”

Mathieu's ca­reer spans some 35 years, and his legacy at Cycling Canada in­cludes a long list of achieve­ments, most no­tably the world­class in­door velo­drome at the Mat­tamy Na­tional Cycling Cen­tre in Mil­ton, Ont. In ad­di­tion, he over­saw a world-class BMX track build in Toronto at Cen­ten­nial Park, along with up­grades to the moun­tain-bike course at Hard­wood Ski and Bike near Bar­rie, Ont., both for the Pan Am 2015 Games; in­au­gu­rated the Cycling Canada Hall of Fame and the Hop On Cam­paign (en­cour­ag­ing peo­ple to get on their bikes and con­trib­ute to Canada's rep­u­ta­tion as a lead­ing cycling na­tion) and hired 10 more coaches.

Dur­ing his ten­ure, Canada also won mul­ti­ple medals at the Olympics, Par­a­lympics, World Cham­pi­onships and Pan Am Games, with record-set­ting lev­els at­tained. He was re­cently hon­oured at a gala held in Ot­tawa, Ont. to rec­og­nize Canada's Olympians and Par­a­lympians.

“We have en­joyed the sta­bil­ity of our se­nior-management team un­der Greg's lead­er­ship since 2009, and are ap­pre­cia­tive of the ef­forts made to fur­ther the growth of the or­ga­ni­za­tion, while in­creas­ing our ca­pac­ity in key ar­eas of high per­for­mance, de­vel­op­ment and mar­ket­ing,” noted Tolkamp. “His suc­ces­sor will be ex­pected to build on this growth and en­sure con­tin­ued recog­ni­tion of Cycling Canada as a lead­ing na­tional-sport or­ga­ni­za­tion.”

“It has been, and con­tin­ues to be, an in­cred­i­ble ex­pe­ri­ence work­ing in a sport with such ded­i­cated, pas­sion­ate staff and vol­un­teers,” said Mathieu. “See­ing Cana­dian rid­ers suc­ceed at the high­est lev­els and be­com­ing role mod­els for the next gen­er­a­tion has been quite re­ward­ing, as has the de­vel­op­ment of more world-class cycling races and fa­cil­i­ties in the coun­try.”

(above) New Cycling Canada

CEO Pierre La­fontaine

(left) Re­tir­ing CEO Greg Mathieu is hon­oured at a sea­son-end gala in Ot­tawa.

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