Canada's Sports Hall of Fame is opening its doors Nov. 8 to accept a new class of six into the national sport pantheon – but the top office in the new Calgary-based Hall remains vacant.
Chief Executive Officer Claire Buffone-Blair stepped down at the end of August, but is remaining on the job as president pending selection of a successor, says manager of marketing and communications Bridget Cox.
"It will be the first inductions in the new location is on WinSport's land in Calgary – and technically under new management. That doesn't mean WinSport is the owner, we're partners with them," Cox said in an interview. "The entity is still separate -- Canada's Sports Hall of Fame, as it was six or seven years ago when it closed its doors at Exhibition Park in Toronto. Since then, everything (all the artifacts) have gone into storage."
Hockey great Ray Bourque, CFL kicking star Lui Passaglia, 10-time Paralympic medalist skier Lauren Woolstencroft, Ironman triathlon world champion Peter Reid, international and pro soccer player Andrea Neil and International Olympic Committee member Richard Pound are the 2011 inductees. They are the latest members who bring the total membership in hall to 520. The Hall actually opened its doors last Canada Day.
"I felt that my job was done and it was time to find someone who could commit the necessary time to take CSHoF to the next level," Buffone-Blair said on stepping down. The CSHoF board of governors are conducting the search for a new CEO.
Among red carpet invitees for the ceremony are hockey goalie Johnny Bower, Canadian Olympic Committee president Marcel Aubut, Olympic gold medal winners Michelle Cameron (synchronized swimming), Kerrin Lee-Gartner (alpine skiing), Cassie Campbell (hockey). Marnie McBean (rowing), Kyle Shewfelt (gymnastics) and World Cup ski icon Ken Read.