Pierre Lafontaine New CEO of Cross Country Canada
Pierre Lafontaine has been hired as Cross Country Canada's (CCC) new Chief Executive Officer (CEO) beginning Dec. 1.
One of Canada's most distinguished sport leaders, Lafontaine brings a wealth of international experience with him, having served as CEO and national coach of Swimming Canada from 2005-13, followed by two years as CEO of Canadian Interuniversity Sport. He has worked in all levels of the sport system in Canada, the U.S. and Australia. Prior to working at Swimming Canada, Lafontaine spent three years as head coach of the Australian Institute of Sport.
“We are committed to continuing our growth and success, and I can't think of a better man to lead a new era for our sport in this country than Pierre,” said Jamie Coatsworth, chair of the CCC board.
Lafontaine is widely acclaimed as an innovative leader in the swimming community, not only in athlete and coach development, but also in building relationships with key stakeholders: Own the Podium, Canadian Olympic Committee and Canadian Paralympic Committee. Lafontaine has achieved podium results as a CEO and coach at major international events from the Olympics and Paralympics to World Championships, to Pan Am and Common- wealth Games.
“There are many synergies between swimming and cross-country skiing. They are technically-driven sports that have athletes with great engines who are fiercely dedicated to achieving excellence,” said Lafontaine, who will relocate to Canmore, Alta. from Ottawa, Ont.
“We need to work hard to maintain our strong relationships with existing corporate and sport partners, while finding innovative ways to bring new sponsors that want to be part of a great family that is focused not only on skiing for medals, but also on encouraging people of all ages across Canada to ski for life,” added Lafontaine.
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has competed in Nordic-combined, cross-country and ski jumping. After the closure of Big Thunder Ski Jumping Centre in 1995, Crooks focused on cross-country with his hometown Big Thunder Nordic Ski Club, training hard on the ski trails of Kamview.
In his very first National competition, he claimed two medals in the juvenile division. Advancing to the junior level, he earned a spot on the Canadian National Junior Team and represented Canada at two World Junior Ski Championships, where his 11th-place finish in the sprints in 2003 was one of the best ever by a Canadian male.
The 2003 overall junior Canadian champion, Crooks competed at the 2003 Canada Games in New Brunswick, where he claimed gold in the sprints and helped Ontario earn a bronze medal in the team event.
A highlight of his career was representing Canada at the 2006 Turin Olympics, finishing 11th in the 4x10km team relay. He also put in a strong performance in the sprint qualifying race, coming up just two spots shy of advancing to the final heats.
Diamond Head Sports is New Distributor for Vauhti
Diamond Head Sports Inc. is now distributing Vauhti Ski Wax products in Canada. Based in Joensuu, Finland, Vauhti's roots go back to 1912, when the first Salaisuus (secret) wax was developed. Products are tested by World Cup wax technicians and skiers worldwide, and research related to waxing technology has been conducted at the University of Eastern Finland in Joensuu for almost 20 years.
“Diamond Head Sports is well known and represents several high-end winter-sport brands and products, and Vauhti's products will fit very well with their portfolio,” commented Martti Uusitalo, chairman of the board at Vauhti.
“With Vauhti's increased investments in research and new technologies and cooperation with leading wax scientists, their products will be in even more demand by consumers. We will make every effort to work with all retailers across Canada so they're able to provide great service to their customers,” said Joze Sparovec, president of Diamond Head Sports.