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Athletics director to head Canadian delegation at Winter Universiade

Canadian Interuniversity Sport, as the Canadian representative of the International University Sports Federation (FISU), announced Monday the appointment of UWindsor athletics director Gord Grace as Canada’s chef de mission for the 26th winter world university games in Trentino, Italy, December 11 to 21.

Theresa Hanson, associate director of intercollegiate sport at the University of British Columbia, will lead Team Canada at the 27th summer games in Kazan, Russia, in July.

CIS spokesperson Mary MacDonald said the league is thrilled to have secured Grace and Hanson to head the red and white delegations.

“Under their leadership, there is no doubt our student-athletes will enjoy tremendous success and experiences that will last a lifetime,” she said.

Hanson and Grace each had their first taste of the Universiade in the summer of 2009 in Belgrade, Serbia, where they served as Team Canada administration manager and transportation manager, respectively.

Grace has been at the helm at Windsor since 2002. He is currently president of Ontario University Athletics and a member of the CIS board of directors. Under his guidance, the Lancers have enjoyed tremendous success at the provincial and national levels, capturing 24 OUA and 15 CIS titles, while also playing host to 13 conference or Canadian championships.

“The Universiade is a great opportunity for our Canadian student-athletes to participate and showcase their talents in a world-class sporting event, and it is an honour to be a part of the team that will support these athletes,” he said. “Having previously been a Team Canada staff member in 2009 in Belgrade, I know the time and dedication put in by all the student-athletes, coaches and support staff, and I am looking forward to the opportunity of working with them in Italy, as they strive for excellence on the international stage.”

The Universiade is an international multi-sport event that takes place every two years. Second only to the Olympics in number of participating athletes and countries, it is open to competitors between the ages of 17 and 28 in the year of the games who are full-time students at a post-secondary institution or have graduated from a post-secondary institution in the year preceding the games.

The 2013 Winter Universiade will feature 12 sports: alpine skiing, biathlon, cross-country skiing, curling, freestyle skiing, figure skating, ice hockey, nordic combined, short track speed skating, ski jumping, snowboarding and long track speed skating.