AOA Completes New Athletic Structure

U14, U16, U19 Athletic Lead Announcement

COLLINGWOOD, ON (May 4th, 2017). Alpine Ontario Alpin (AOA) is pleased to announce the completion of its new Athletic Committee (AOAC) including four Athletic Lead Consultants joining AOA. This process commenced several months ago and is designed to involve active coaches on the hill, specific to each age level, as they enter the Train to Compete phase of the Long-Term Skier Development (LTSD) plan.

AOA is thrilled to welcome the following four alpine ski coaches to the organization: Joey Lavigne as the U19/FIS Athletic Lead; Heather Metzger and Graeme Buckrell as the U16 Athletic Leads and Jacques Reid as the U14 Athletic Lead. These four Athletic Leads along with four regional representatives will work with Kip Harrington, the new OST Head Coach & Program Director, to make up the Athletic Committee (AOAC)

AOA Executive Director Scott Barrett comments. “It’s exciting to welcome these four outstanding coaches to our mix. Between them, they bring close to 100 years of coaching to our sport! We are confident this shift towards Athletic Lead consultants will reach the entire Province, engaging more coaches and more athletes at all levels.”

Joey Lavigne – FIS Head Coach, NCO Ski Team (National Capital Outaouais)
Joey joined the NCO ski team in 2011 as Head Coach. Born and raised in Ottawa, Joey is well known to the alpine racing community both as an athlete and coach. One of the highlights of Joey’s career was his role as a Canadian Alpine Ski Team coach at the 1980 and 1984 Winter Olympic Games.

Coaching highlights:
• Program Director/Head Coach of the Alberta Provincial Ski Team (1977)
• Canadian Alpine Ski Team Coach on Europa Ski Circuit (1978-1982)
• Canadian Alpine Ski Team Coach for World Cup (1983-1985)
• Program Director/Head Coach of the Southern Ontario Division (1986-1990)
• Ontario Ski Team Coach (1991-1992)
• Managing Director of Alpine Ontario (1992-1993)
• Program Director, Canadian Alpine Ski Team (1994-2005)
• Athletic Director, Ontario Ski team (2006-2010)

Off the hill, Joey has a passion for cabinet making. Joey is married to Cathryn Jayne McIlveen and has three grown children.

Graeme Buckrell – Head Coach, Osler Bluff Ski Club
Graeme grew up in the Caledon area and skied with the Caledon Ski Club before joining the Ontario Ski Team. Graeme has been the Head Coach of the Osler Bluff Ski Club since 1994.

Off the hill, Graeme has a passion for all sports. He and his wife own Active Life Conditioning located in Collingwood where they are both heavily involved, year-round, in athletics. Their two children are competitive hockey players and compete in the U12 and U14 programs at Osler Bluff.


Heather Metzger – Head Coach of the U14/U16 Extended (OCUP) Program, Georgian Peaks
Heather grew up in the Collingwood area and raced with the Toronto Ski Club before starting to coach. Heather has been an active participant and contributor to the alpine ski racing community in Ontario for many years.

Coaching highlights:
• Alpine Program Director at Georgian Peaks (1995-2005)
• Alpine Ontario Technical Director (2005-2011)
• U14/U16 Head Coach, Georgian Peaks (2011-current)

Off the hill, Heather and her family live in Thornbury and enjoy all aspects of outdoor living. Her three children have progressed through the ski programs at Georgian Peaks; her husband is an alpine coach, her daughter on the Ontario Ski Team and her son entering the FIS stream this season. She is a Level 3 Coach and Level 4 Instructor.

Jacques Reid – Head Coach of the U14/U16 Extended (OCUP) Program, Craigleith Ski Club
Jacques (JSKI) is from Montreal and grew up ski racing in the Eastern Townships. He has coached at all levels in BC, Quebec, Ontario and oversees. He is a Level 4 coach, Level 4 Instructor and DL & PL facilitator with Alpine Canada.

Coaching highlights:
• K2 (U15) Coach, Blackcomb Ski Club (1990-98)
• K2 (U15) Head Coach, NCO (National Capital Outaouais Ski Team) (2001-03)
• Ontario Men’s Ski Team coach (2004-07)
• Head Coach, Devil’s Glen Country Club (2008-2011)
• U14-16 Extended Program Head Coach, Craigleith Ski Club (current)

Off the hill, Jacques enjoys playing tennis and hockey and in particular likes, road biking all over Southern Ontario. Jacques and his wife live in Collingwood with their two active teenagers; their daughter is a ski instructor and competitive swimmer, their son is a competitive soccer player and OCUP U16 ski racer.

The AOAC will work as a team throughout the next 12 months leading their respective age groups. Guiding the group from an administrative perspective will be Robyn Skinner, AOA’s Competition Director. The AOAC will be introduced this Saturday, May 6th at the AOA Spring meetings in Toronto. Moving forward they will meet frequently, ensuring that, among other things, the 2017-18 calendars, criteria, selections and special projects are planned out accordingly on a timely basis.

I encourage all members to join us this Saturday at the AOA Spring Athletic Meeting in Toronto as we’ll be introducing these four coaches and dedicating time for each particular age group.Barrett concludes, “Ski racing can be an overwhelming sport so this is a great opportunity to join in, learn more and share your thoughts.

Details on the AOA Spring Athletic Meeting can be found here. There is no cost to attend.


About Alpine Ontario Alpin (AOA)
AOA is the provincial governing body for the sport of alpine ski racing in Ontario. Alpine Ontario’s newly refined mission is to provide leadership and structure for high quality, sustainable and affordable programming and to communicate the competitive, recreational and lifestyle benefits of ski racing to the community. AOA represents four divisions, 44 member clubs, and over 30,000 active athletes, coaches and officials (volunteers). AOA coordinates several successful programs across the province and continues to foster the development of “state of the art” ski-racing programs from the grass roots level to the elite level.

For more information contact:
Scott Barrett
Executive Director
Alpine Ontario Alpin (AOA)


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