Thiessen named CEO

Nolan Thiessen will take the helm of Curling Canada as its Chief Executive Officer. (Photo, World Curling Federation)

Nolan Thiessen takes over duties as Curling Canada Chief Executive Officer

A familiar face has been named Curling Canada’s new Chief Executive Officer, it was announced today.

Nolan Thiessen, a three-time Brier and former world men’s curling champion, who has been a member of the Curling Canada senior management team for the past four years, will take the position following a thorough and exhaustive search and interview process conducted by an external agency, SRI, alongside Curling Canada’s Board of Governors CEO hiring committee.

He replaces Katherine Henderson, who departed Curling Canada in August to take the position of CEO and president at Hockey Canada.

Nolan Thiessen has his name on the Brier Tankard three times. (Photo, Curling Canada/Michael Burns)

“I’m truly humbled by this opportunity, and it’s one that I know comes with a great deal of responsibility, but I have a great team around me that is well-positioned to continue taking our sport forward and build on what Katherine did during her time at Curling Canada,” said Thiessen, 43. “Our sport has so many avenues forward as we look to reach into new communities and make our sport and championship events even more inclusive and welcoming. I can’t wait to see what the future holds for curling in this country.”

Thiessen was a member of Brier-winning teams in 2010, 2014 and 2015, and was a member of Canada’s world championship gold-medal team in 2010.

He retired as a competitive curler following the 2015-16 season, and took on duties as an Athlete Liaison for Curling Canada in 2016 and also served as a consultant. He was formally hired two years later, and most recently served as the Executive Director, Marketing and Fan Experience.

Thiessen also has been active internationally, serving on the World Curling Federation’s Athlete Commission for more than five years (and chairing the commission for three of those years), and then moving onto the WCF’s Competition and Rules Commission a year ago.

Away from curling, Thiessen, a University of Manitoba Bachelor of Commerce graduate, is a member of the Chartered Professional Accountants of Canada, and holds the CPA and CA designations. He also sits on the board of Sport Tourism Canada

“We said at the beginning of this process that we would leave no stone unturned, and that we would take the time to make sure we do this right, and I firmly we believe we did with Nolan Thiessen,” said Michael Szajewski, Chair of Curling Canada’s Board of Governors. “He has played an integral role in helping our organization move forward over the past few years, and his vision is completely in line with the Board’s on what needs to happen to continue this forward progress.”

Thiessen will assume the full-time duties as CEO this week, taking over from interim CEO Danny Lamoureux, who will resume his retirement plans that were delayed to help Curling Canada transition after Henderson’s departure.

“Danny has been, and will continue to be, a source of wisdom and we couldn’t be more thankful that he stepped up over the past few months as we embarked on our search,” said Szajewski.

“Curling Canada tasked SRI with conducting a comprehensive global search to identify its next CEO,” said Jeff Yocom, SRI’s North American partner leading the search. “Considering the strength and heritage of the sport in Canada, we recognized early on the importance of installing a Canadian into the role. With that intent, we identified an outstanding group of 13 candidates for the board to deeply investigate and consider. We congratulate Nolan for standing out and are confident he will excel in the role and continue the important work of Curling Canada to grow the sport.”

Curling Canada