Central Okanagan Sports Hall of Fame: The Class of 2016

Kelly Scott rink, Bob Giordano, Ron Rubadeau, Conny Stamhuis and Blair Horn inducted Thursday at 9th annual ceremony in Kelowna

The Kelly Scott rink (from left): Coach Gerry Richard

For the better part of two years, the Kelly Scott rink set the standard for women’s curling all across Canada.

On Thursday morning in Kelowna, the exceptional accomplishments of the local curlers were officially acknowledged with their induction into the Central Okanagan Sports Hall of Fame.

One of five new inductees enshrined for 2016, the Scott crew captured the Canadian women’s curling titles in both 2006 and 2007, and the world women’s curling championship in Japan in 2007.

Scott was joined on the team by third Jeanna Schraeder, second Sasha Carter, lead Renee Simons, fifth-player Michelle Allen and coach Gerry Richard.

Scott said a key to her team’s success was the compatibility of all the people involved—and ideal mix of calmness, intensity, humour and competitiveness.

“It was a really neat blend of personalities,” said Scott.

“A team made up of only four to six players, it’s so crucial that each area is covered with that mix of personalities. We were lucky to have that.

“It was a great time, I think some of the best times of all of our lives on our team,” Scott added.

“It’s not all glory, you’ve got to put into the hard work to get the good moments out of it, but it was definitely worth it for us.”

The other COSHF 2016 inductees are:

Bob Giordano

Giordano, who passed away in 1965, was a tireless promoter of hockey in Kelowna in the 1950s and ’60s.

He served as general manager of the Kelowna Packers, the first sports team to play behind the Iron Curtain when it toured the Soviet Union in 1958. A Kelowna civic award for sports volunteerism was named after Giordano in 1999.

His son, Guyle Giordano, accepted the honour on behalf of Bob and his family.

“Kelowna was a small town at one time, and he did a lot here for hockey and amateur sport,” said Guyle Giordano.

“It shows the selflessness that he had. Him being part of the Kelowna fabric for so long, this award is a great honour and really appreciated by our family.”

Blair Horn

A member of the Canadian Olympic Hall of Fame and B.C. Sports Hall of Fame, Horn won a gold medal with Canada’s men’s eights rowing team at the 1984 Olympic Games in Los Angeles.

Horn also won a bronze medal at the 1983 Pan American Games.

Horn said without the support of many people and groups over the years, the success he and the other inductees enjoyed wouldn’t have been possible.

“It’s community, it’s sports organizations, it’s the high schools,” said Horn. “Without that community we weren’t able to accomplish the things we did.

“I feel honoured and hope we here are doing a little bit to inspire the future.”

 

Ron Rubadeau

A constant presence on the Kelowna sports scene, Rubadeau was the chair of the 2008 B.C. Summer Games.

Instrumental in the development of sailing in the valley, he helped establish the Central Okanagan Sailboat Association in 1982.

Rubadeau was named Canada’s top race officer in 1998 and the B.C. Sailing Association’s volunteer of the year in 2005.

“It’s pretty humbling being next to all these great athletes,” said Rubadeau.

“(Sports) has been a lifetime for me, not only volunteering for the B.C. Games but in sailing and lots of other activities over the years.

“Sport means so much in terms of building a sense of community.”

Conny Stamhuis

Still swimming in the Fountain of Youth in her 80s, Stamhuis has won seven gold and four silver medals at the World Masters Swim Championships.

She was instrumental in the improvements made to Athans Pool and the construction of the H2O Adventure and Fitness Centre.

At the age of 84, she continues to compete annually in the Across the Lake Swim in Kelowna.

“I’m humbled and elated at the same time,” Satmhuis said of her induction.

“I did not ever think this honour would be bestowed on me.”