Canadian Olympic family mourns the passing of Dr. Gene Sutton

On Sunday August 2, 2009, the Canadian Olympic Family lost a dear friend and colleague as Dr. Gene Sutton passed away in Hamilton, Ont. at the age of 64. She leaves behind a legacy of leadership and dedication to the world of amateur sports in Canada.

“We are truly saddened to hear of the loss of such a long standing supporter of the COC,” said Michael Chambers, President, Canadian Olympic Committee. “I had the distinct privilege while Chef de Mission at the Atlanta Olympic Games of working with and befriending Gene who as a dedicated member of our Mission Staff contributed greatly to our success at the Games. I later had the privilege of serving with Gene as a COC Board and Executive Committee member. She truly was a remarkable woman who displayed such passion for the athletes in this country, and clearly understood sport within the greater context of Olympism. We are honoured to have had such a champion among our ranks.”

“Gene Sutton will be tremendously missed by everyone involved in the Olympic Movement in Canada. She was one of those rare individuals whose dedication to the Olympic ideal, particularly through her work with Olympic education and Olympic academies, transcended the politics of sport,” said Chris Rudge, CEO and Secretary General, Canadian Olympic Committee. “She was genuinely focused on the needs of athletes and coaches. In all she did, through her work in gymnastics or her support of athletes at Games, the athletes were first and foremost in her mind. For many she can truly be described as having been, for many years, the conscience of the Olympic Movement in this country.”

Sutton, one of Canada’s best-known gymnastics officials and Vice Chair of Gymnastics Canada, was a member of the Canadian Olympic Committee Board of Directors since 1997. Over the last 12 years, she was named Chef de Mission for the 2003 Santo Domingo Pan American Games team, was instrumental in leading the Golden Horseshoe’s efforts around the 2015 Pan American Games bid and led the charge in areas of Olympic education and academies as Chair of the Canadian Olympic Academy.

Since 1976 Sutton contributed her passion and knowledge to a number of committees as a judge, administrator and visionary. She sat on the Gymnastics Canada Board of Directors for 21 years, 17 as Vice chair and was Chair of Sport Hamilton.

The Family requests that gifts in memory of Gene be made to the “Canadian Olympic Foundation” at by entering “In memory of Dr. Gene Sutton” in the Comments field. All gifts identified as ‘In memory of Dr. Gene Sutton’ will be directed toward the Canadian Olympic Committee’s Education Program, a program which was so important to Gene. Memorial Gifts can also be mailed in to the Canadian Olympic Foundation, 21 St Clair Ave E. Suite 900, Toronto, Ont., M4T 1L9.

A celebration of Dr. Gene Sutton’s life will take place later this month.