Beresford Named Apprentice Coach for 2021 Canada Summer Games
Row Ontario’s coaching staff for the 2021 Canada Summer Games added another member on Thursday, as Caitlin Beresford was selected as an apprentice coach for the team.
Beresford, who currently serves as head coach with the Orillia Rowing Club, was chosen for the role through the Canada Games Apprentice Coach Program. This innovative coaching program, which is led by Coaching Association of Canada, in partnership with the Canada Games Council and Provincial/Territorial Coaching Representatives, provides the opportunity for each province and territory to send two female coaches and two aboriginal coaches to the 2021 Canada Summer Games in apprenticeship roles.
Beresford was named as an apprentice coach for Ontario’s rowing team from a group of applicants across all summer games sports through an external selection process. The Barrie, Ont. resident is looking forward to bringing her wealth of coaching knowledge to the team and also views the experience as an opportunity to learn from some of the top rowing coaches in the country.
“I am very excited to have been selected for the 2021 Canada Summer Games Apprentice Coach Program and to be able to work with, and be a member of the coaching staff, for Team Ontario,” said Beresford. “I truly believe that this will be an experience of a lifetime, which will bring me closer to my own coaching objectives of becoming a high performance provincial or domestic level coach. I believe in continuously improving and bettering myself, in all that I do, and being transparent, honest, inclusive, and accountable to everyone that I work with; and that, as a coach, I hope that these attributes will benefit the athletes of the 2021 CSG Team! I appreciate that the Coaching Associations of Canada and Ontario have such a program for coaches, and I will endeavour to participate in every valuable opportunity that I can over the course of this whole experience.”
The appointment of Beresford as an apprentice coach, marks the second consecutive Canada Summer Games that a rowing coach has been chosen from the pool of candidates across all sports. In 2017, Jamie Bell, from the Ottawa Rowing Club, earned the honour and helped lead the Ontario rowing squad to 14 total medals.
Beresford has been active in the Ontario rowing community since 2000, when she got her start as a competitive athlete before transitioning into coaching in 2004. She began coaching at Western University, after an injury sidelined her university career, and has coached at the competitive level at a number of rowing clubs, including the Orillia Rowing Club, Kingston Rowing Club, the Durham Rowing Club, and the Barrie Rowing Club. Prior to going back to school in 2011, to complete her Juris Doctor at the University of Windsor, Beresford was also the head coach of the Ontario Tech varsity rowing program in 2010.
In addition to her coaching experience, Beresford has also served on the Row Ontario Board of Directors since 2018, and owns her law practice in Barrie that specializes in Aboriginal Law. She joins Dr. Amanda Schweinbenz on the Canada Summer Games coaching staff, who was named head coach of the team in January.
The objectives of the Apprentice Coach Program are to build coaching capacity for women in sport; provide female apprentice coaches with domestic multi-sport exposure; provide female apprentice coaches with enhanced professional development and learning opportunities to prepare them for higher level coaching, and ensure an increase in their level of certification to a minimum of Competition-Development; expose female apprentice coaches to elite women coaches’ experiences; and ensure female apprentice coaches are prepared to play a meaningful role during the Canada Games experience.
The Canada Summer Games are a major sporting event in Canada and serve as a steppingstone for rowers and all athletes towards representing Canada in sporting events on the international stage. At previous editions of the event, Ontario athletes have been a dominant force and rowers, specifically, have played a large role in Team Ontario’s overall success at the Games. In 2017, Ontario led the overall medal standings with 210 medals (86 gold, 65 silver, 59 bronze) while Ontario rowers brought home a total of ten medals (7 gold, 1 silver, 2 bronze) in 14 total events. Their seven gold medals were the most in the nation.