Get to know the 2017 Canada Summer Games Host Society President and CEO
We sat down with Jeff Hnatiuk to find out more about his goals and dreams for these Games, his plans for the next few months, and the things he’s most looking forward to in 2017.
With over twenty-five years of sport leadership experience, Jeff Hnatiuk is the President and CEO of the 2017 Canada Summer Games. Jeff is on secondment from his position of President and CEO of Sport Manitoba, where he oversaw the delivery and development of sport in Manitoba, while serving as a leader on many provincial and national boards and task forces.
Hnatiuk was once the Executive Director for both Golf Manitoba and Hockey Manitoba. He has served on the Board of Directors for the 1999 World Junior Hockey Championships, the 2002 North American Indigenous Games, and the 1999 Pan American Games Legacy Committee. He has a Bachelor of Recreation Studies from the University of Manitoba and an Administration Degree from the University of Winnipeg.
- Why did you decide to get involved with the 2017 Canada Summer Games?
I was very interested in one of the Games’ biggest selling features - that is to be a part of Canada’s largest multisport event. This role also allows me the opportunity to be part of an organization that will create and leave important legacies for our community and for sport in Manitoba.
- What is your vision for these Games?
First and foremost, we want to provide an amazing experience for our young, Canadian athletes. We’re pleased the spotlight will shine on and showcase Winnipeg and Manitoba on a national scale during the 50th anniversary of the Canada Games as well as Canada’s 150th birthday celebrations. We are also looking forward to using these Games to create capacity within our community by developing the next generation of leaders.
- What are you working on over the next 2-3 months?
As an organization, we’re focusing our efforts on outreach. We’re recruiting volunteer leads to populate our committees, and we’re reaching out to the corporate community to help us bring these Games to life. We’re also looking to increase awareness of the Games within the community.
- What does it mean to you to host the Games on the occasion of their 50th anniversary?
We are very fortunate to be allowed to highlight our sport and culture-rich communities when we host the 50th anniversary Canada Games. Winnipeggers and Manitobans are called upon to support a variety of events and always rise to the occasion. I’m looking forward to seeing everyone come together to demonstrate our ability to host major events. It truly will be something to see.
- What kind of legacy do you hope these Games will leave for Winnipeg and Manitoba?
Physical legacies, like the Canada Games Sport For Life Centre build and the upgrades to the Pan Am Pool and track at the University of Manitoba are very important for our city. We plan to continue to work with the City and Province to enhance additional venues and spaces as we move closer to the Games.
The human legacy is a very important one. Through volunteer engagement, building community spirit, and developing the next generation of leaders, coaches, officials, and athletes, we hope to build and strengthen capacity in our province.
The Games will be the largest Winnipeg has seen since it hosted the Pan Am Games in 1999. We are still seeing the benefits of the legacy work that was completed 16 years ago. I hope our efforts will leave a positive imprint of our city and province in the minds of its residents and those who come to visit in 2017.