Sport Events Congress 2004 results in strong committment for further collaboration among sport and tourism sectors

Ottawa, May 7, 2004 -

Approximately 200 representatives from Canada's sport and tourism sectors met in Ottawa this past weekend to attend Sport Events Congress 2004: Building Business through Sport, an annual event organized by the Canadian Sport Tourism Alliance (CSTA). Congress delegates included representatives of national, multi-sport and major games organizations, destination marketing organizations, economic development agencies, federal/provincial ministries of sport and tourism, and suppliers of goods and services to the industry.

Top industry leaders presented their perspective on current industry performance with an outlook on future opportunities.  Key note speakers included Michele McKenzie, President and CEO of the Canadian Tourism Commission; Randy Williams, President and CEO of the Tourism Industry Association of Canada; Olympian Greg Joy; Ken Read, President and CEO of Alpine Canada; Dave Parkes, CEO of the Canadian Curling Association; Stacey Allaster, Vice President and Tournament Director, Tennis Canada; and Chris Rudge, CEO of the Canadian Olympic Committee;. 

'The COC is committed to working with CSTA and other key stakeholder groups to ensure a high standard of professional excellence in sport hosting in Canada,' stated Chris Rudge. 'Through effective collaboration we will ensure the multiple benefits of sport hosting, from economic impact, to athlete and community development, are fully realized.'

The CSTA also launched a series of new tools for its members, which may be tailored to suit the particular needs of communities and events rights holders.   These included a comprehensive Sport Event Business Plan Template, developed in collaboration with Omnisports, an expanded Sport Events Marketplace for National Sport Federations and Canadian municipalities; in addition to a training workshop for the Sport Tourism Economic Assessment Model (STEAM). 

Elaine Harvey, Acting Manager of the Hosting Unit at Sport Canada, also announced the adoption of a Strategic Framework for Hosting International Sport Events in Canada by the Federal and Provincial/Territorial Sport Ministers. Over a period of five months, Rick Traer, CEO, Canadian Sport Tourism Alliance, participated in a working group on the development of the strategy.  'The hosting framework provides an outstanding platform for increased collaboration and coordination among all sport and tourism stakeholders in the industry segment', said Traer.  'We look forward to working with our federal, provincial and municipal partners to continue to grow the industry in communities across Canada.'

The Canadian Sport Tourism Alliance announced its Board of Directors for 2004-2005, at the Annual General meeting held in conjunction with the Congress.  The ten member Board is composed of :  Todd Brandt, (Tourism Saskatoon), Matthew Coyne (Tourism Vancouver), Gary Curgin (CSTT Management , London), Glenn Duncan (Economic Development Edmonton); Janet Gates (Toronto), Lynda Généreux (Tourism  Sherbrooke), Doug Kryzanowski (Lethbridge CVB), Peter Montopoli (Skate Canada), and Ursula Thiboutot (Swimming Canada). The Board of Directors unanimously elected Ursula Thiboutot, Director of Marketing and Development at Swimming Canada, and former Chair of the Canadian Tourism Commission's Product Development Commmitee, as President of the Board. Andrée Steel (Ottawa) remains on the Board of Directors as Past President. 

'Since its inception in 2000, CSTA has been a leader in the evolution of Sport Tourism in the country by facilitating discussion among key stakeholder groups, providing expertise, training and the critical tools required to ensure a high standard of performance by our industry,' stated Ursula Thiboutot.  'CSTA will continue to enhance its leadership role by engaging members and stakeholder groups in the implementation of an effective action plan that will capitalize on the momentum being generated by the 2010 Games.'