Keynote Speaker - Angela James
Angela James is a Canadian former ice hockey forward, who played in the Central Ontario Women's Hockey League (now the National Women's Hockey League), and represented Team Canada internationally. Considered the first superstar of modern women's hockey, Angela scored 34 points in 20 games over four women's world championships, including 11 goals in five games in the inaugural IIHF World Women's Championships, held in Ottawa in 1990.
In 2005, Hockey Canada honoured Angela with the female breakthrough award, given for making significant contributions to the promotion and/or development of female hockey in Canada. She was acknowledged for her efforts to promote and develop the game for females, and for her great skill within the game. Along with highlighting her excellence, Hockey Canada also noted that she has played at every position, including goaltender, where she recorded a shutout. Angela has coached the North York Aeros, and she has officiated in the Ontario Women's Hockey Association.
In 2008, she, along with Cammi Granato (USA) and Geraldine Heaney (CAN), became the first women to be inducted into the International Ice Hockey Federation Hockey Hall of Fame. In 2008, the Angela James Bowl was created in her honour. The trophy is awarded to the Canadian Women's Hockey League's top scorer. On 22 June 2010 Angela was included in the 2010 Hockey Hall of Fame class; she and Cammi Granato became the first women inducted. Angela was formally inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame on 8 November 2010.
Angela now works as a sports co-ordinator at Seneca College in Toronto.
Deb has been an active member in North America's LGBT community for 20 years. She moved to Toronto from Peterborough, Ontario when she was 19 years old. Making her way through many, many jobs, she got her start in entertainment as a drag king in the early 90's. Deb found the spotlight and grew as a performer through improv, hosting hundreds of events throughout North America, sharing stages with Cyndi Lauper, singing, comedy and appearing in drag on Queer as Folk.
Her strong commitment to her community is made clear through her many years of raising funds for breast cancer and HIV/AIDS awareness and being a pioneer as the first lesbian to host both mid-day and morning shows on the worlds first LGBT commercial radio station. She is the host of foQus with Deb Pearce on Rogers TV.
Beth Beattie was born and raised in Toronto. She has enjoyed playing sports all of her life. She has participated in Pink Turf soccer and Rainbow Hoops. The past few years she has been swimming with the Downtown Swim Club. Her passion over the past four years has been playing water polo with the Toronto Tirggerfish. Beth has a masters of law in alternative dispute resolution and enjoys getting to the root of matters. She is very interested in exploring issues around women in sport in the LGBT community.
Michelle Brownrigg is the Director of Physical Activity and Equity at the Faculty of Kinesiology and Physical Education at the University of Toronto. Her educational and professional background has involved sport, physical activity and health across the spectrum of age and ability. She has had a particular focus on child and youth development, as well as working in a consulting capacity to university student-athletes and teams, and with sport teams and athletes at the community, national, international and professional levels.
Vrinda Eapen believes in a battle against conventional beliefs. This led her to opening the first and only yoga studio in the Village, Buddha Body Yoga, to create more community, flexibility and happiness. Her yoga instruction and teachings have given her the opportunity to be of service to many by encouraging them to stretch, not just their bodies but their brains. Breaking through uncertainty and living with passionate action are regular themes in her spirited classes. Yoga with Vrinda is a breath of fresh air. You don't need to be Indian and flexible; You just need to decide to have an open mind. Inhale. Exhale. See you there.
Sara-Marni Hubbard is the Equity Program Coordinator in the Faculty of Kinesiology and Physical Education at the University of Toronto. She has never met a sport she didn’t like. Over the years she’s participated in competitive swimming and gymnastics, recreational running, cross-country mountain biking, rugby, snowboarding, skiing, yoga and she’s currently on the hunt for a new sport. She holds an undergraduate degree from the University of Toronto and an MA from Concordia University in the History of Science. Outside of sports and recreation, Sara-Marni is a popular science enthusiast and a bad dancer.
Karen is a life-long athlete and dedicated fitness professional. She is a CanFitPro Personal Trainer Specialist, Level 1 Strength Coach (Poliquin International Certification Program), Fascial Stretch Therapist (Stretch to Win Institute) and is trained in Assessment and Exercise, Advanced Strength Training and Olympic Lifting (Darby Training Systems).
Whether the client is a high-performance athlete seeking to achieve new levels of success, a newcomer to fitness training, or an individual looking to overcome or prevent injury, Karen designs and conducts training programs to achieve optimal results in a manner that is collaborative, free from judgment and enjoyable. Results are achieved for clients because Karen's training sessions are founded in scientific knowledge, continual research and professional development, first-hand experience, passion and creativity.
Karen's approach recognises the integral role that fitness plays in overall health and quality of life. A focus on functional strength ensures that Karen's clients receive workout programmes that achieve genuine fitness, not merely the appearance of fitness.
Strength for Every Body. No Judgment. Just Results.
Ken Meiklejohn is Vice-Chair of OutSport Toronto and Special Projects Officer for Strategic Initiatives in the Office of the Vice-President, Research at the University of Toronto. After pursuing his doctoral studies at the University of Toronto, Ken worked in the private sector in a variety of roles specialising in strategy development and implementation. In 2008, Ken was hired by the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Toronto to assist in the implementation of its strategic plan and has been at U of T ever since.
An avid sports and fitness enthusiast since childhood, Ken served as the U of T Graduate Students' Union representative on the Council of Athletics and Recreation. He loves outdoor activities, especially hiking, kayaking, skiing, and mountain biking, and actively participates in community sport through the Toronto Gay Football League. Ken is also a certified personal trainer and strength coach and enjoys helping others achieve their fitness and sports performance goals. Ken believes in the ability of sport to foster comradeship, inclusivity, physical fitness, and a healthy way of living for its participants, and in the power of sport to break down barriers and forge strong, lasting ties between diverse individuals and communities.
Katie Misener is an Assistant Professor in the Faculty of Applied Health Sciences, Department of Recreation and Leisure Studies, at the University of Waterloo. Her area of focus is not-for-profit sport and recreation management, with a particular focus on building capacity and sustainability within community-based sport and recreation management, effective support partnerships, volunteerism effectiveness in community sport and recreation, and the civic impact of community-based amateur sport and recreation. Katie has worked with groups in both accademic and non-accademic settings, helping them to understand the organisational and capacity challenges they face, and how to effectively deal with those challenges.
James graduated from McMaster University with a commerce degree, and joined the Hudson's Bay Company upon graduation. It was this, his current job, that was the original impetus for a move to Toronto in 2007, however, he was soon able solidify his roots in the city, by way of becoming involved in the LGBT sport community.
Joining the Cabbagetown Group Softball League introduced James to Toronto's best kept secret - a thriving, inclusive, and healthy community of LGBT-friendly athletes. Through friends he made on his softball team, he took up curling as a winter sport. He became involved in an informal football "pick-up" game in 2009, and then with a team of committed volunteers, took up the task of establishing the Toronto Gay Football League. As assistant commissioner, he saw the league launch in 2010 with +75 players and five teams, and is looking forward to starting year two with upwards of 100 players and 2 to 3 additional teams.
James has a great appreciation for the power of sport to create a community of inclusiveness and healthy living. He is thrilled to be apart of the OutSport Toronto board, as director of membership and member services.