Ladies First

Bill Cooper, Chief Operating Partner



Wake up, Canada.

This is a precious moment in time and an unparalleled opportunity for positive inspiration – but it is not being leveraged anywhere near to the degree it should.

Canadian women are leading the world in sport on a scale never before seen. And while prevailing opinion is that more success is yet to come, we cannot sit idly by, vainly assuming that we can wait and see if the trend continues before seizing this opportunity at a later date.

Sponsor a women’s sport property, broadcast a women’s sport property, attend a women’s sport event, share the news and spread the word. Let’s harness this hard-earned success and channel the resulting inspiration. Canadian girls deserve to enjoy membership in this moment.

  • Soccer – 8th in the World, Olympic bronze medalists and upcoming hosts to the 2015 FIFA World Cup
  • Rugby 15s – 3rd in the world and second-place finishers in the 2014 Rugby World Cup
  • Rugby 7s – 2nd in 2013 World Cup
  • Basketball – semi-finalists in the 2014 FIBA Women’s World Basketball Championship
  • Hockey – 1st in the world and 2014 Olympic Gold medalists
  • Wheelchair Basketball – Current World Champions
  • Curling – 2014 Olympic Gold Medalists
  • Tennis – Eugenie Bouchard, 7th in the world

. . . and the list goes on.

Is it just me, or is this not a colossal opportunity to inspire and motivate Canadian girls with tangible examples of determination and team work yielding unbelievable success? Perhaps it is my bias as a father of three daughters and a sport industry enthusiast to boot, but I can’t shake the feeling that we’re in the process of missing the boat here.

The 2015 FIFA World Cup is literally months away and there is an absence of urgency around ticket sales, a dearth of advertising or imagery that draws upon the story of these women rising to the top of their field, and a myopic media focus limited to periodic bursts of interest in turf controversy rather than the prospect of motivating and inspiring Canadian girls on a scale never before seen.

The women propelling these amazing teams and sport success stories are of immense character. They pursue a passion, driven by love of team, dedication to betterment and pride in self. They are not pre-occupied by salaries and airtime. They represent the central themes of sport to which we should all be most drawn.

I have seen my daughters bask in the glow of a few moments with some of these women and every minute is to be cherished. More Canadian girls deserve this chance. We must allow them to plug into this moment in time and extract immeasurable energy and inspiration.

So buy a ticket to a Women’s World Cup match, invite a Canadian Women’s Rugby Team player to speak at a school event, tune into a Canadian Women’s Hockey team game, sign your daughter up for a soccer league, show her evidence of Canadian Women’s teams successes on the internet, talk about the journey these women have undertaken and the proof they represent that dreams can be fulfilled and that friends/teammates are a force to be nurtured and relied upon.

Come on, Canada – we are in the midst of a powerful moment! Don’t let this pass us by.