A natural showman on ice, this Oshawa skater’s outstanding record of success includes the 1959-62 Canadian, 1959 and 1961 North American Senior Men’s titles, and the 1959 and 1960 World silver and 1960 Olympic bronze medals. In 1962 he earned Canada’s first Men’s World Figure Skating Championship title in what was acclaimed as the finest come-from-behind skating performance ever staged. Landing the first triple Lutz in international competition, he earned a record setting seven perfect marks and was named Canada’s Outstanding Athlete of the Year for 1962. Active as a professional for over 30 years he has been inducted into Canada’s Sports Hall of Fame and the United States Figure Skating Hall of Fame.
Suzanne (Morrow) Francis and Wallace Distelmeyer
This team acclaimed the 1947 and 1948 Canadian Pair, 1948 Canadian Dance and the 1947 North American Senior Pair titles. Competing on the world stage in 1948 they made Canadian history by becoming the first pair team to win Olympic and World medals, bringing home the bronze. They also made skating history by becoming the first team to perform the modern-day death spiral in international competition. Accomplished singles skaters as well, Wallace claimed the 1948 Canadian Senior Men’s title and Suzanne the Canadian Women’s title from 1949-51. With Wallace going on to serve as a coach and instructor and Suzanne a World/Olympic judge their involvement in figure skating has spanned six decades.
A national skating champion in her native Holland, Ellen emigrated to Canada in the 1950’s and joined the Toronto Cricket, Skating and Curling Club. She went on to become one of Canada’s most respected coaches and choreographers taking skaters to numerous World, Olympic, International and Canadian competitions for over five decades. Among the many skaters who benefited from her exceptional coaching style were Petra Burka, 1964 Olympic bronze medallist and 1965 World Champion and Toller Cranston, six-time Canadian Senior Men’s Champion and 1976 Olympic bronze medallist. Her commitment, innovative coaching techniques and dedication earned her the Order of Canada in 1978. In 1996, she became an honored member of Canada’s Sports Hall of Fame.
This Vancouver native’s dedication as an early pioneer of the sport of figure skating covered more than 40 years. Active with the Connaught Skating Club during the 1920’s, and as a judge and referee, he joined the Executive of the CFSA in 1950, going on to serve as President from 1959-61. In 1960 he served as Team Manager for the Canadian Olympic Team and realized a dream come true when his home town of Vancouver hosted the World Championships. In 1960 he also began work on the CFSA’s constitution overseeing its incorporation in 1962. In 1965 the Granville Mayall Memorial Trophy was awarded to the Canadian Novice Dance Champions in recognition of this outstanding builder’s dedication and commitment.
Dr. Sidney Soanes
For over 50 years this Toronto skating enthusiast served the sport of figure skating as an author, committee member, accountant, judge and referee. Serving as an ISU judge he oversaw more than 12,000 tests and 100 competitions. One of the most highly respected authorities on dance judging, he wrote Ice Dancing – A Manual for Judges and Skaters; the ice dance judges bible. On the CFSA Board of Directors from 1955-66 he was instrumental in spearheading many changes such as judges exams, innovative techniques in testing and test reporting. For his contributions he was awarded a 1967 Centennial Medal, the 1972 Ontario Sports Achievement Award and the 1980 CFSA Award of Excellence.