June 7, 2016 – Former Canadian Collegiate Athletic Association President Linda Stapleton of Seneca College has been named the CCAA Athletic Director of the Year.
Stapleton received the award at the CCAA Hall of Fame Banquet this evening in Toronto.
"Linda is highly respected by all who have had the privilege of working with her," said David Munro, CCAA VP Sport Development. "She is a very special person who fully deserves this prestigious award."
Stapleton has contributed to athletics at Seneca for nearly forty years. She has overseen the department since being named Manager of Athletics & Recreation 21 years ago.
The 2015-16 season can be described as the 'perfect storm' for Stapleton, who played an enormous role in the success of the Sting.
At Badminton Nationals, Seneca's Wenchao Shi didn't lose a set on route to winning gold in Men's Singles, while Yan Zhou and Rachel Nham earned a silver medal in Women's Doubles. The threesome also helped the OCAA capture Conference Supremacy gold. Later in March, the Seneca women captured gold at the 2016 CCAA Curling National Championships.
"This has been a special year for Linda, her coaches and student-athletes," said Jim Bialek, Past President in the Ontario Colleges Athletic Association. "The success of the Sting on the national stage has never been as evident as it has been this year."
Stapleton's leadership also made a tremendous impact in the OCAA once again this year as Seneca continued to raise the bar in hosting. The Sting welcomed Ontario's best in Badminton and Men's Volleyball in 2016.
Meanwhile, Stapleton continues to strongly believe in the academic success of her student-athletes. She recently developed the Sting 360 program, which ties in Student Life, Academics and Athletics and how the principles of Character, Academics and Excellence incorporate in all aspects of a student's life. The program focuses on commitment, time management, team work, leadership, fair play, fitness, nutrition and overall well-being.
Stapleton supports the annual Sport in Aurora Champions Breakfast as well as several community outreach programs that she also encourages both staff and student-athletes to participate in such as the annual Food Drive, Terry Fox Run, Movember, toy drive and the preparation, packaging and delivery of food to those in need.
At the provincial level, Stapleton has served on every committee imaginable and has held numerous positions from sport convenor to President.
"She is an informed, collegial and professional voice at the OCAA table and is well known for her contributions as president of the CCAA, among other national governance roles," said Bialek.
Stapleton served as the CCAA's President (2012-14) and VP of Governance (2010-12). She has also served on several CCAA Committees, including Eligibility, Female Apprentice Coach Program and Hall of Fame.
Fittingly, Seneca alumni Marcy Skribe (Athlete), Frank and Rozika Sulatycki (Coach) and Avery Brevett (Athlete) were inducted into the CCAA Hall of Fame on the same evening Stapleton received her award.
"Linda has served tirelessly in her leadership roles in the OCAA and in the CCAA," said Munro. "She has been a real inspiration and role model to Athletic Directors across the CCAA who aspire to make the same difference in years to come."