The audience at Pacific Coliseum, all of Canada, and skating fans all over the world held their breaths as six-time Canadian Ladies Champion Joannie Rochette took the ice for the ladies short program at the 2010 Olympic Winter Games in Vancouver, British Columbia. Two days earlier her mother, Thérèse, had died of a sudden heart attack. Knowing her mother’s dream was to see her win an Olympic medal, Rochette made the difficult decision to compete.
Heather Greenwood Davis is a lawyer turned multiple award-winning journalist, travel columnist, freelance feature writer and blogger. Called to the Bar in Ontario in 2001 after completing both Journalism and Law degrees, Heather practiced law for several years before returning to her primary passions: writing and travel.
Heather Moyse left a wake of push-start records on tracks all over the world on her way to winning Canada’s first ever Women’s Bobsleigh Olympic gold medal with teammate Kaillie Humphries on February 24, 2010 in Whistler, British Columbia. She has also represented Canada on the National Senior Women’s Rugby team in 22 international rugby games. Heather was the leading try-scorer in both the 2006 and 2010 Women’s Rugby World Cups, and was selected as one of only two females in the world to be International Rugby Anti-doping Ambassadors.
Four-time Olympic medalist, Hayley Wickenheiser is regarded as one of the best female hockey players in the world with an uncompromised determination and dedication to her sport. However, it’s not just her lethal slapshot that is respected by her teammates, fans and peers; Wickenheiser is an award winner, community leader, mentor, history-maker and an accomplished businesswoman.
Dr. Sima Samar is probably one of the most selfless leaders on the world stage today. Dr. Samar fled Afghanistan in 1984 after her husband was arrested and killed during the Soviet invasion. Since then she has been fighting for the rights of women and children suffering under Soviet repression and subsequent Taliban rule. In 2003, Dr. Samar was appointed chair of the Afghanistan Independent Human Rights Commission. In 2002, she received Canada’s prestigious John Humphrey Freedom Award and in 2004 the John F. Kennedy Profile in Courage Award.
Dr. Joey Shulman DC, registered nutritionist, is the author of several best- selling books including The Natural Makeover Diet – 4 steps to Inner Health and Outer Beauty and the national best seller The Last 15 – A Weight Loss Breakthrough and her latest book Healthy Sin Foods – Decadence without the Guilt.
Over 2,000 audiences around the world from Russia to Argentina to Hong Kong- clients such as IBM, AT&T, Allstate, New York Life, Toyota, and Kawasaki-have been challenged by Dr. Janet Lapp to adopt an innovative mindset that can create positive change and overcome challenge. She presents in French or Spanish for appropriate audiences.
Cyndi Desjardins was a successful business manager, working in product development and sales management, as well as being a new mom when necrotizing fasciitis (otherwise known as flesh eating disease) entered her life and altered it forever. After five weeks of battling this disease, she awoke to find her hands and feet had been amputated in an effort to save her life.
Chantal Vallée is the Head Coach of the University of two-time Canadian University Champion Windsor Lancers Women’s Basketball.
She has been selected “Coach of the Year” 9 times in the last four years with a winning percentage of 90%.
Chantal was hired by the University of Windsor in 2005 even though she had never before coached a university team. At the time, they were ranked second-last in Canada; in the 2 years prior to Chantal’s arrival, the team had won only 8 of their 60+ games and were known as the “doormat of women’s basketball.”