News Release Archive


Sport and Recreation Minister Jay Abbass has announced the
mission staff for the 1997 Canada Games in Brandon, Manitoba,
Aug. 9-23.

Mr. Abbass said the staff is an excellent combination of people
who have Canada Games experience and some joining the team for
the first time.

"It is essential to have experience on the mission staff team to
address the necessary details. At the same time, I believe
recruiting those who are new to the games will give us a fresh
outlook," said Mr. Abbass.

"I know the Canada Games management group had a difficult time in
choosing the mission staff, but I am sure the team that has been
put together will give all of its energy to make this a
successful journey to Brandon for everyone."

The following are members of the mission staff:

Chef de mission is Nancy Spencer of Halifax. Nancy has an
extensive background in the Canada Games. She was the assistant
chef de mission for the 1995 Canada Games and was a member of the
mission staff in 1993. Nancy was also the manager of the men's
and women's squash teams in 1991. Nancy is a part-time lecturer
at Mount Saint Vincent University and is an education consultant
in the Atlantic Provinces.

The assistant chef de mission is Bruce Chiasson of Fall River. He
was a member of the Canadian National Canoe Team from 1981 to
1986. Since then he has been the manager of the 1996 Canadian
Olympic canoe team and served as manager for the 1994 and 1995
senior World Canoe Championships. Mr. Chiasson is familiar with
the Canada Games having served as manager and team leader of the
provincial team in 1993.

Acting as communications advisor for the games is John Whidden of
Communications Nova Scotia. Mr. Whidden's background includes
both broadcast and print media. He assisted in planning for the
1993 Canada Games and was involved in supplying provincial media
with results of the Winter Games two years ago. He is a resident
of Halifax.

Michael Bell, Dartmouth, has been involved in softball and
basketball for the past 18 years. He coached the 1993 women's
Canada Games softball team, and for the past two summers has been
an assistant coach with the 1997 women's Canada Games basketball
core team. Mr. Bell also coaches the women's basketball team at
Dartmouth High School. He has been recognized for his
contributions to sport by being named Basketball Nova Scotia
Coach of the Year in 1995, Softball Nova Scotia - 3M Female Coach
of the Year, 1992, and Sport Nova Scotia Volunteer of the Year,

A graduate of Dalhousie University, Linda Chiasson of Fall River
is a newcomer to the Canada Games mission staff. She has been
involved in ice skating as both a competitor and coach. In 1979
and 1980 she competed nationally. Ms. Chiasson has been the
recreational administrator and head coach at the Dartmouth Figure
8's Skating Club since 1992.

Anita DeLazzer of Sydney is bringing her extensive skills as an
organizer to the mission staff. As a member of the 1987 Canada
Games staff she helped to implement the entire communications,
security, transportation, maintenance and ticket sales network
for the games.

Joanne Lebans, Yarmouth, is a novice to Canada Games experience
but her involvement in sport as a participant, coach and
organizer is extensive. Ms. Lebans is the assistant recreation
coordinator with the Municipality of Argyle. As a prelude to her
involvement in the Canada Games, she served as assistant chef de
mission for Nova Scotia at the 17th Acadian Games in Saint John,
N.B. this past year.

Ed Matchett, New Germany, is back on familiar ground with his
involvement in the 1997 Canada Games. Mr. Matchett was the
manager of the 1991 and 1995 Canada Games fencing teams. It was
at the 1991 games that he coined a phrase used by the then
federal minister of sport in his closing marks: "The gold is in
the experience not in the medal." He now coaches fencing in
Bridgewater and Lunenburg.

Skiing and biking are two main interests of Linda Murray. The
Dingwall area resident was manager of the 1995 provincial
cross-country ski team and was protocol and ceremony coordinator
at the cross-country ski venue at the 1987 Canada Games. Ms.
Murray has served on the executives of Nordic Ski Nova Scotia and
the North Highlands Nordic Ski Club. She has served as chief of
Race Cape North, part of the Cape Breton Mountain Bike series.

Pierre Nobert of Church Point is another newcomer to the Canada
Games mission staff. Mr. Nobert has been the athletic director at
Universite Sainte-Anne for the last 11 years. He has been
involved in volleyball and for the past three years has been
named the Atlantic College Athletic Association (ACAA) Coach of
the Year. This year he received the Canadian College Athletic
Association (CCAA) Coaching Excellence Award for women's


Contact: Nancy Spencer  902-425-5454, ext 344

trp                    Oct. 08, 1996 - 9:15 a.m.