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Home > About Us > History > WO Hall of Fame > 2011 Induction

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Achievement Awards

2011 Hall of Fame Induction

  • Cynthia Coull & Mark Rowsom
  • Geraldine Fenton, William McLachlan & Virginia Thompson
  • Suzanne (Morrow) Francis & Wallace Distelmeyer
  • Donald Knight
  • Katherina Matousek & Lloyd Eisler
  • Donald McPherson


  • Doug Kimpel
  • John McKay
  • William (Bill) Ostapchuk


  • Dennis Silverthorne

Cynthia Coull & Mark Rowsom

Cynthia Coull and Mark Rowsom are former Canadian singles and pairs figure skaters.

Cynthia and Mark stepped on the ice together for the first time in the month of August and nine months later won the Silver medal at the 1984 Skate Canada International.

They won three consecutive Canadian Championships, from 1985-1987.

In 1985, Cynthia became the first Canadian athlete in 34 years to skate both pairs and singles at an International Competition.

Cynthia Coull & Mark Rowsom
In 1986, Cynthia and Mark won Gold at Skate Canada International. Five times, they placed in the top ten at International Competitions with their best finish of a Bronze medal at the 1986 World Championships.

Geraldine Fenton, William McLachlan & Virginia Thompson

1950s ice dancers Geraldine Fenton of Toronto and Virginia Thompson of Montreal & St. Catharines each shared a successful competitive career with William McLachlan of Toronto. Fenton and McLachlan were three-time Canadian champions from 1957-59 and two-time North American dance champions in 1957 and 1959.

They were Waltz and Tenstep champions in 1954, 1957, 1958 and 1959 and Tenstep champions in 1956.

The duo won silver medals at the 1957 and 1958 World Championships and a bronze medal at the 1959 World Championships. Thompson and McLachlan were the national champions from 1960-62 and were North American champions in 1961. They went on to win a silver medal at the 1960 World Championships and a bronze medal at the 1962 World Championships.

They were inducted into the Skate Canada Hall of Fame in 1996.

Top photo: Geraldine Fenton & William McLachlan
Bottom photo: Virginia Thompson & William McLachlan

Geraldine Fenton and William McLachlan

Virginia Thompson and William McLachlan

Suzanne (Morrow) Francis & 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.

Suzanne Francis / Wallace Distelmeyer

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.

They were inducted into the Skate Canada Hall of Fame in 1992.

Donald Knight

Although he retired from amateur skating at the young age of 19, Donald Knight left his mark on the sport during the 1960s. In 1961, he became the Canadian Junior Champion when he was just 13 years old. For the next six years he finished on the podium at the senior Canadian championships, placing 3rd in 1962, second in 1963 and 1964 and was crowned champion for three straight years, 1965-1967.

The native of Dundas, Ontario was a master of the compulsory figures, his legendary work ethic enabled him to become an all-round skater, incorporating powerful jumps, spins and intricate footwork into his programs.

Donald Knight

He represented Canada internationally with distinction as well, capturing the 1967 North American Figure Skating Championships title. His first of five appearances at the ISU World Figure Skating Championships, came when he was just 15. In 1965, he finished 3rd and earned a bronze medal for Canada. At the 1964 Olympic Winter Games, he placed ninth.

Regarded as one of the skating world’s most passionate ambassadors, Donald’s later career included touring professionally with Holiday on Ice and Ice Capades. A true gentleman, he continues to inspire young skaters today with his enthusiasm and passion for the sport as a coach with the Burlington Skating Centre.

Donald was inducted into the Skate Canada Hall of Fame in 2008.

Katherina Matousek & Lloyd Eisler

Katherina Matousek and Lloyd Eisler are former Canadian pairs figure skaters.

In the 1982-83 season, Katherina and Lloyd became a pairs team and competed internationally for Canada. At the 1983 Canadian Figure Skating Championships, they won a Bronze medal, and won the Gold medal at the 1984 Canadian Figure Skating Championships and competed in the 1984 Winter Olympics, finishing eighth.

Katherina Matousek / Lloyd Eisler

At the 1984 Skate Canada International they won the Bronze medal.

Katherina and Lloyd also won the Bronze medal at the 1985 World Figure Skating Championships.

Donald McPherson

As a young four year-old Donald began skating at the Stratford Figure Skating Club and went on to become an exceptional athlete and claim a number of firsts in the history of figure skating. Competing at the senior level he claimed runner-up honors at the 1960, 1961 and 1962 Canadian Championships. In 1963 he became the first man to claim the Canadian, North American and World Senior Men’s titles all in one year without having won any of them previously.

Donald was the first man in world championships to jump from fourth to first place and, having just turned 18 years of age, the youngest man ever to win the world title.

Donald McPherson

Retiring from amateur competition in 1963 and overcoming enormous physical hardships, he went on to star with “Holiday on Ice” in Europe for 10 years. In 1965, he won the Men’s World Professional Championships.

Donald was inducted into the Skate Canada Hall of Fame in 2008.

Doug Kimpel

Doug was instrumental in the formation of the Galt Figure Skating Club (now Cambridge Skating Club) and served as its first President. Doug put together and ran the 1956 Canadian Championships in Galt, which were successful and profitable; breaking the mould of holding Canadian Championships only in major centres. This opened up the possibilities for small communities to participate in hosting championship events.

On October 26, 1963 at the 50th Annual Meeting in Niagara Falls, Ontario, Doug at the age of 38, was elected the President of the Governing Council of the CFSA (Canadian Figure Skating Association, now Skate Canada) and remained president until 1965.

Doug Kimbel

He held office as a Director of the CFSA for more than 15 years, during which time he chaired many committees, some of which were the Finance and Investment Committee, as well as the Sections Committee. He became known as the “Father of Sections” for developing and setting up the Sections (with the exception of B.C. where one already existed) in its present structure; developing infrastructure, rules, governance and competitions. He also served as the first Chairperson of Western Ontario Section in 1957, initiated and created the Badge program, and introduced Novice Championships.

He put together the first post Worlds tour in Canada and the U.S. He was the ISU (International Skating Union) delegate in Vienna, and the CFSA World Team Manager at Cortina, Italy in 1963.

Credit to Guelph FSC

John McKay

Throughout the sixties, John McKay was particularly interested in making it possible for every child in Canada to participate in recreational skating programs. He was chairman of several CFSA committees in the 1970s and oversaw the introduction of the Divisional championships competition and Skate Canada.

He proudly served as CFSA President from 1971-1972, establishing a number of firsts that promoted a sound business environment. These included a Board of Management, the concept of Committee Streams and a total registration of the Association’s members. At $1 per member, this garnered $100,000 in revenue for the Association which permitted expansion and financial assistance to competitive skaters and Officials’ training. John was a long time National and International level Judge and Referee.

John McKay

He was appointed team leader to many international competitions including the 1988 Winter Olympics in Calgary. His distinguished contributions to figure skating were recognized with the International Achievement Award from the Province of Ontario, the Billie Mitchell Award in 1989 and 1990 and a Special Recognition Award for over fifty years of service from the CFSA Western Ontario Section.

John was inducted into the Skate Canada Hall of Fame in 1997.

Charles Dover

In the early 1950’s, Charles Dover became a volunteer with the Grimsby F.S.C. His interests and duties expanded for the good of skating and he soon held club and section executive positions and became a Gold Test Judge in all disciplines.

In 1968-69, Charlie became president of Western Ontario Section and then served as Director for the Canadian Figure Skating Association from 1970 – 1973. He served as Canada’s Team manager at the 1973 Worlds when Karen Magnussen’s Gold medal put Canada back on the world skating map.

Charlie continued his service at the CFSA national level and became a Vice President from 1974-1978.

Charles Dover

In 1978-1980, he served as President of CFSA. It was during this time that CFSA began strategic planning seminars to look forward and identify the major objectives and priorities for the five year period leading up to the 1984 Olympics.

In 1979, the CFSA learn-to-skate programs were upgraded and he appointed Elizabeth Swan as committee chair, to look for other programs to keep youngsters skating. Precision skating in Canada, first introduced by the Ilderton SC was the program that was assessed and later implemented by CFSA.

Charlie was also a member of the first CFSA-FSCC Council with the mandate to provide universal, standardized courses so that all CFSA club skaters would be taught by a certified coach. He served as CFSA’s Past Chair from 1980 to June 1984. Charlie was a member of the Olympic Club of Canada and also recipient of the province of Ontario Special Achievement Award.

William (Bill) Ostapchuk

For nearly forty years, William (Bill) Ostapchuk worked tirelessly to develop figure skating in Canada. He gave unlimited energy, leadership and commitment to his wide range of volunteer roles with the association.

He brought the skills of his professional life, as a Certified Management Accountant, to his role as Chief Accountant for various figure skating events including the 1978 ISU World Figure Skating Championships, six Canadian Championships, five Skate Canada International events and numerous divisional, sectional and club competitions. He developed and trained an entire generation of competition accountants through his work as Chair of the National Accountants’ Committee.

William (Bill) Ostapchuk

His vision to modernize this function and to bring a level of professionalism and consistency to the role of accountants was realized through his dedication and devotion.

Bill served for many years on the National Board of Directors, and was elected President of Skate Canada from 1990-1992. He was widely respected for his business acumen, which served to improve the financial planning, management and reporting for the association. As a member, and then Chair of the Marketing and Communications committee, he realized that attaching title sponsors’ names to both the Canadian Championships and Skate Canada International would make sponsorship more attractive and increase its value. As a result, the association saw significant increases in the marketing and sponsorship revenue during his tenure.

He also served with distinction on the Athlete Trust, the Executive Committee and the Finance Committee. In 1991 the Hall of Fame Trust was formed and he became the first chair. In every role that he accepted, he improved and advanced the association’s processes and reputation significantly.

Bill was inducted into the Skate Canada Hall of Fame in 2010.

Dennis Silverthorne

Arriving in Canada in the early 1950s, this two-time British pairs champion and World and Olympic competitor, dedicated over half a century to the development of figure skating in his adopted homeland.

He began his coaching career in Schumacher and coached at various clubs in Ontario and in the U.S. Dennis then developed and coached at the Silverthorne Skating School, for forty plus years guiding and sharing his knowledge and passion for skating to thousands of skaters and their families. A Master Coach, he also served on the Figure Skating Coaches of Canada board and on advisory committees. Dennis led many training seminars throughout his long career.

Dennis Silverthorne

Amongst his list of students was Donald McPherson whom he coached to the top of the world podium in 1963, and into the record books as the first man to claim the Canadian, North American and World Men’s titles all in one season. Donald McPherson was the youngest man to claim the World crown.

Dennis’ impact on the sport of figure skating in Canada is not just evident in the world champion skater he coached but in the number of his students who are carrying on his legacy through their continued involvement in skating as volunteers, judges and coaches.

Dennis was inducted into the Skate Canada Hall of Fame in 2006.


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