Brock University alumna Elisabeth Walker-Young (BPhEd ’02) has been named Team Canada’s chef de mission for the Toronto 2015 Parapan American Games.
The four-time Paralympian was pegged as a natural to serve as Team Canada’s spokesperson when it competes on home soil.
“Elisabeth’s contribution to the London Paralympic Games as assistant chef de mission was spectacular, and I couldn’t be happier to have her leading the largest Parapan Am Canadian team ever in her native Ontario,” Canadian Paralympic Committee president Gaétan Tardif said in a release. “There is great value in Canada hosting international events, and I know Elisabeth will help Team Canada’s athletes and coaches make the most of the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity of competing at a home Games. Just being around Elisabeth is motivating, and she has a natural rapport-building ability that I know the team will appreciate and benefit greatly from.”
Walker-Young swam for Brock before making a splash internationally. The Toronto native won six medals (three gold, one silver, two bronze) at four Paralympic Games, breaking several Canadian and world records during her career. Walker-Young is an educational programs manager for Curl B.C. She lives in North Vancouver with her husband Ian (BSM ’02), who was also a varsity swimmer with the Badgers.
“This is the culmination of years of focus and hard work as an athlete, of contributions as a volunteer and experiences working in the sport sector,” Walker-Young said. “It is these experiences, memories and skills from my participation in sport and the values I learned along the way that I hope to share with the athletes and coaches of Team Canada, to help them reach their goals.”
The Toronto 2015 Parapan American Games run Aug. 7-15, 2015 and will feature 1,608 athletes from 28 countries competing in 15 sports. Team Canada is expected to send a team of approximately 200 athletes and has set a goal of finishing in the top three nations in total medal count.