National Sport Organizations in Canada are the governing bodies for sport in Canada.  They have many important functions including selecting and managing their national teams, implementing national initiatives to develop and promote their sport as well as many other duties.  NSO’s work closely with the Provincial Sport Organizations (PSO’s) who in turn work with local clubs to promote their sport and generate opportunities for grassroot involvement.  

During Connection 2021, you will be hearing from leaders who work in 6 of our National Sport Organizations - find out more about them in their bios below! 

If you would like more information on all Paralympic sports, please click here

Fannie Smith – Athletics Canada  

Fannie found her true passion for adaptive and parasports at the end of 2010 and has never looked back. Fannie is the Manager, Para Development with Athletics Canada, an experienced Mission Staff with the Canadian Paralympic Committee and a member of CPC’s Performance and Games Operations committee. She previously held the role of Athletics Manager with BC Adaptive Snowsports from 2011-2020.  

Fannie recently completed her Certification as a Certified Canadian Diversity and Inclusion Professional (CCIP) with the Canadian Centre for Diversity and Inclusion (CCDI). Her passion lies in a continuous learning journey in developing awareness and tools to understand the systematic barriers in sport better as it relates to diversity, equity, and inclusion. 

She believes that creating spaces where individuals feel safe and seen and belong will lead to a more inclusive and diverse society and that this work starts with athletes with a disability, LGTBQI2S athlete & BIPOC athletes and coaches. 

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Julie Beaulieu – Nordiq Canada  

Julie has years of experience working in Canada’s sport system, including roles as the Development Coordinator and National Programs Manager with Canoe Kayak where she was responsible for many aspects of the NSO’s high performance programs.  She also worked at Wrestling Canada as High Performance Manager before moving on to Nordiq Canada where she worked as the Para-Nordic Coordinator.  Julie is now the High Performance Manager for all of Nordiq Canada’s Para Programs.  Julie has been a coach in both canoe-kayak and cross-country skiing in both the Olympic and Paralympic streams and is passionate about both sports!  

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Kim Krahulec – Canada Snowboard 

Kim is currently the High-Performance Manager for Canada Snowboard’s Speed based programs which include two Olympic Disciplines of Snowboardcross and Alpine Snowboard and the Paralympic Disciplines of Snowboardcross and Banked Slalom. Her core responsibilities are to work with technical staff on the development of annual and quadrennial plans to support world leading performance, governance and resource acquisition, external partner collaboration, program management, and major event team leader (logistics and planning). Kim strives to value each athlete’s journey first and understands that snowboard is merely the vehicle with which we do this together.  She was a Snowboardcross athlete with Olympic aspirations who retired and then spent several years coaching in Colorado before moving to Canada for university.  

Headshot image in red winter coat and black toque

Marc Creamer – Canoe Kayak Canada 

Marc is the National Coach and Manager for Para Canoe.  He joined Canoe Kayak Canada’s national coaching team in 2016 and supported Canada’s first ever Paracanoe Team at the 2016 Rio Paralympic Games as Team Leader, where the sport made its debut.  

Marc won the Petro Canada Coach Excellence award in 2014, being recognized for coaching Paralympian and 5-time Paracanoe World Champion Christine Gauthier. He plays a key role in growing the National Paracanoe program and preparing the team for success at International events. 

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Mark Newton – Alpine Canada 

Mark is the Para-Alpine Sport & Development Manager with Alpine Canada.  He grew up ski racing, playing hockey and rugby. Marc holds a Bachelor of Sport and Fitness leadership, a Diploma in Sport Management and is also a Performance level Coach in NCCP, course facilitator, coach evaluator, Master Coach developer in training, and a Chartered Professional Coach.  

He has been working in Para sport since 2015 and has a passion for long term athlete development and physical literacy.  Marc’s role with Alpine Canada allows him to work with athletes from the grassroots to Paralympics with a focus on developing a quality sporting experience that provides athletes with the foundations for success on and off the slopes  

Head shot, shoulders up, in Alpine Canada back baseball cap and plaid shirt

Melissa Dowling – Canadian Paralympic Committee 

Melissa is the Project Manager for Connection 2021 and will be moderating the National Sport Organization Panel.  She was worked in the Canadian sport system for over 15 years in various leadership roles in the areas of sport administration, logistics, event management and Games operations.  Melissa has been a Team Canada support team member for 11 multi-sport Games including Paralympic Games, Olympic Games, Olympic Winter Games, Pan Am and Parapan American Games and the Youth Olympic Games. She has also been involved with field hockey and lacrosse for many years, on and off the field of play.  

Melissa can be reached at  

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This session is brought to you by Sport Canada and our National Sport Organizations.