Kristine Drakich Receives CAAWS Marion Lay "Herstorical" Breakthrough Award

Coach, athlete, sports administrator and leader Kristine Drakich is the recipient of the 2013-14 CAAWS Marion Lay “Herstorical” Breakthrough Award. The award is presented by the Canadian Association for the Advancement of Women and Sport and Physical Activity (CAAWS) in honour of gender equity advocate and founding mother of CAAWS, Marion Lay to an individual, group or organization whose distinct contribution exceeds 10 years and has influenced and/or broken down barriers to equal participation for girls and women in sport.

Celebrating her 25th anniversary as the full-time head coach of the University of Toronto women’s volleyball program, Kristine joined the coaching team after many years as one of the programs most accomplished and recognized athletes. After a career ending on-court injury during her pursuit of the Olympic dream, she put adversity into opportunity to become an exceptional coach and an advocate of women in sport issues.

“Kristine’s leadership has resulted in positive contributions to gender equity at the local, national and international level,” says Karin Lofstrom, CAAWS Executive Director.

Kristine’s coaching career evolved to include an athletic instructor in the Faculty of Physical Education and Heath at the University of Toronto. She has delivered numerous workshops that have reached hundreds of women on issues that include body image in sport, female athletes and coaches, and gender equity. She has also served on many committees and task forces, including the Gender Equity Task force, President of the Ontario Volleyball Association, and was a leader in the development of an anti-harassment policy with an emphasis on reducing homophobia in sport.

“While Kristine’s professional achievements are exceptional, it is her personal passion and ‘behind the scenes’ work that has helped so many women excel,” says Moira Lassen, CAAWS Chair. 

Kristine Drakich was presented with the CAAWS Marion Lay “Herstorical” Breakthrough Award on Friday, March 28th at the University of Toronto Varsity Honors President Reception.

The Canadian Association for the Advancement of Women and Sport and Physical Activity (CAAWS) is a national non-profit organization dedicated to creating an equitable sport and physical activity system in which girls and women are actively engaged as participants and leaders. CAAWS provides a number of services, programs and resources to a variety of clients, including sport and physical activity organizations, teachers, coaches, athletes, volunteers, health professionals and recreation leaders. Since 1981, CAAWS has worked in close cooperation with government and non-government organizations on activities and initiatives that advocate for positive change for girls and women in sport and physical activity.


Source: CAAWS

Photo: Jing Ling Kao Beserve (L to r: Meric Gertler - President of U of T; Kristine Drakich; Nancy Lee - CAAWS board member)