Paralympic stars Stephanie Dixon and Chelsey Gotell two of Canada’s emerging women leaders in sport

Canadian Paralympic Committee

March 07, 2020

Former teammates make huge impact

Chelsey Gotell

OTTAWA – Stephanie Dixon and Chelsey Gotell were once teammates of Canada’s Para swimming team for many years and now they are co-simultaneously making huge impacts in Paralympic sport as high ranking volunteers and administrators.

Dixon, originally from Brampton, Ont., and now located in Whitehorse, is an athlete, coach, leader, mentor, broadcaster and is now the Chef de Mission for Team Canada at the 2020 Paralympic Games in Tokyo. She executed the same role last year at the Parapan Am Games in Lima.

After a 19-medal haul in Para swimming at three Paralympic Games, Dixon retired from competitive sport in 2010 but she’s been a strong presence in the Para sport community both in Canada and around the world ever since. 

In 2007, three years before the end of her competitive career, she served as an ambassador for the Parapan American Games in Rio to raise awareness for equal sporting opportunities for all athletes. She was also assistant chef de mission for the Canadian team at the Toronto 2015 Parapan Am Games.

As a broadcaster, she was part of the Canadian Paralympic Committee’s team at Sochi 2014 and acted as a television host for the 2013 IPC World Swimming Championships in Montreal. For the 2016 and 2018 Paralympic Games, she was one of the main faces of broadcast coverage on CBC. Dixon also provided expert commentary for Commonwealth Games broadcasts in April 2018.

Dixon was inducted into the Brampton Sports Hall of Fame in 2015 and Canada’s Sports Hall of Fame in November 2016. In 2018 she was appointed to the Order of Canada. 



She is a graduate in psychology from the University of Victoria, where she also swam for the varsity team. 
Since March 2017, Chelsea Gotell is the Charperson, Athlete’s Council for the International Paralympic Committee. 

In that role, the represents the collective voice of Paralympic athletes within the IPC and the greater Paralympic Movement. As the liaison between IPC decision-makers and Paralympic athletes, the IPC Athletes’ Council works to provide effective input into decision-making at all levels of the organization.

Gotell was born and raised in Antigonish, Nova Scotia. In the 2000’s Gotell  became a three-time Paralympian, a 12-time Paralympic medallist and world record holder in numerous events.

Retiring after Beijing 2008, she has served as the Athlete Services Officer for the Canadian Paralympic Team Mission Staff at the London 2012, Sochi 2014, TORONTO 2015 Games and Rio 2016. 

The mother of one daughter,  has a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology from McMaster University and graduated from the Canadian Academy of Osteopathy. She is currently the owner and operator, Osteopathic Manual Practitioner at Etobicoke Osteopathy.

In her spare time, she is a passionate athlete advocate for sport and the Paralympic movement and a motivational speaker who believes in what the power of sport can do to positively change lives. She was the Vice-Chair of the Canadian Paralympic Committee’s Athlete Council.

On International Women’s Day we salute our two Paralympic Superwomen.

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