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Own the Podium Names Respected Canadian Paralympic, Olympic Sport Leaders Patrick Jarvis and Chris Overholt to Board

Jarvis and Overholt nominations made official during Board’s first meeting as legal entity

OTTAWA—In its first official Board meeting as a stand-alone legal entity, Own the Podium named former Canadian Paralympic Committee president, Patrick Jarvis, and current Canadian Olympic Committee chief executive officer, Chris Overholt to its high-powered Board, chair John Furlong announced on Monday.
 
Jarvis is an accomplished Paralympian, who is also a member of the International Paralympic Committee Governing Board, and was heavily involved while serving on the VANOC Board of Directors for the 2010 Games. Overholt has brought a long career of sports marketing success to Canada’s Olympic movement since joining the COC in 2011, most recently with the Miami Dolphins of the National Football League. As the Dolphins’ vice president - corporate partnerships and broadcasting, he was responsible for leading the organization’s efforts in selling corporate sponsorships as well as overseeing all of the team’s radio and television broadcast relationships.
 
“Adding Chris and Patrick to our Board re-emphasizes Own the Podium’s focus on fully preparing Canadian athletes to achieve medal-winning performances in both Olympic and Paralympic sport,” said John Furlong, chair, Own the Podium.
 
Inducted into the Canadian Paralympic Hall of Fame’s Builders Category in 2007, Jarvis led the transformation of the Canadian Paralympic Committee from a Games-based organization to one focused on developing a world leading and sustainable Paralympic sport system across Canada.
 
“Patrick brings world calibre expertise and international respect, as both an athlete and leader in Paralympic sport. His presence brings a new energy to the Board’s goal of ensuring long-term success for Canada’s Paralympians,” said Furlong.
 
Overholt joined the Canadian Olympic Committee in April 2010 in two roles: chief operating officer (COO) and chief marketing officer (CMO), overseeing the day-to-day activities of the organization and leading the marketing function and business development.
 
“The addition of Chris to OTP’s Board is another significant step taken to strengthen, coordinate and harmonize the high-performance sport system that is focused on delivering programs and services designed to achieve excellence at future Olympic Games,” added Furlong.
 
Jarvis and Overholt join a dynamic, influential Board led by John Furlong that includes: Keith Pelley; Julie Payette; Dr. Mike Wilkinson; Ian Bird; Dr. Guy Larose; Therese Brisson; and Tricia Smith.  All Board meetings also include recently appointed CEO, Anne Merklinger and Lane MacAdam, executive director, Sport Excellence Division, Sport Canada, who moved from a Board member to an observer under the new entity.
 
The addition of Jarvis and Overholt came as the Board held its first meeting since officially becoming an independent legal entity in April.
 
“This is the final step in the evolution of Own the Podium from its roots as a pilot program in the lead-up to the 2010 Games, to an organization that is responsible for leading the development of Canadian sports in the achievement of sustainable podium performances at the Olympic and Paralympic Games,” said Furlong.
 
About Own the Podium
Own the Podium, a not-for-profit organization, prioritizes and determines investment strategies to national sport organizations in an effort to deliver more Olympic and Paralympic medals for Canada. Own the Podium's largest contributor of funding is the Government of Canada with additional funding provided by the Canadian Olympic Committee and its Canadian Olympic Foundation, the Canadian Paralympic Committee, along with the corporate community.
 
A national sport technical initiative, Own the Podium was created in 2005 to help Canada become the number one nation at the 2010 Olympic Winter Games, and to place in the top-three nations in the gold medal count at the 2010 Paralympic Winter Games. While Canada remains committed to being a world-leading winter sport nation, Own the Podium set a goal for Canadian athletes to have a top-12 placing at the London 2012 Olympic Summer Games, and to be in the top-eight nations in gold-medal count at the 2012 Paralympic Summer Games. Both of these initiatives reflect what Canadians want from Canada's high-performance athletes and helps advance the "excellence" goal of the Canadian Sport Policy. 
 
For a full summary of Own the Podium initiatives and programs, including a breakdown of support and services by sport, please visit us at www.ownthepodium.org on the Internet.
 
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FOR MORE INFORMATION:
Chris Dornan                               
Own the Podium                        
T: 281-703-4394
E-mail: chris.dornan@ownthepodium.org