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Moving to Port Arthur in 1960 this exceptional builder dedicated close to 30 years to the coaching, facilitation and conception of Thunder Bay athletics. The first sport that was fortunate enough to garner his interest was the relatively new game of ringette. Establishing the sport at the Volunteer Pool Rink in 1975, he served the Thunder Bay Ringette Association (TBRA) for the next 25 years. The clubs first President from 1975-76, he was Games and Tournament Director from 1976-81 for the North West Region and 2nd Vice-President of the Ontario Ringette Association from 1975-80. Taking an active role, he served as a coach and referee and travelled with teams to many competitions. His contributions did not go unnoticed, earning induction into the Ontario Ringette Hall of Fame in 1991.

Not limiting his talents to just one sport, he was involved with the inception of a youth soccer program at the Volunteer Pool Community Centre in 1976, serving the organization through to 1981. Approached that year to start a women's soccer program he went on to spend close to 15 years as a coach and organizer with the Volunteer Pool Association Women's Soccer League.

It was while attending the Ontario Winter Games that Stan set his sights upon the next sport that would benefit from his drive and commitment. Instrumental in the formation of the Thunder Blades Speed Skating Club, he served as their first President from 1987-95. Never one to shy away from a challenge, after only three years of operation, the club hosted the 1990 North American Short Track Speed Skating Championships, with Stan serving as an Executive Committee member for the international event.

Throughout his years of involvement Stan was the type of volunteer that 'did it all' from founder to fundraiser to promoter to coach. His belief in good sportsmanship and the importance of athletics in a person’s life and a community were his driving force. The only rule that he asked his athletes to follow, both in competition and in life, was to 'always try with a smile and if you fall down get up and finish'. With this philosophy it is little wonder that he has been recognized with outstanding achievement awards from the City of Thunder Bay, the Province of Ontario and the Government of Canada.

Inducted into the Northwestern Ontario Sports Hall of Fame, September 29, 2001

Stan Shipston

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