Canada Soccer's John Herdman wins Jack Donohue Coach of the Year Award

Canadian women’s soccer coach John Herdman has been awarded the Jack Donohue Coach of the Year Award by the Coaching Association of Canada.

The award recognizes a coach’s dedication to the profession of coaching, commitment to continual improvement, and the successful performances of his or her athletes during the past competitive season.

“John’s leadership has impacted not just Canada’s performance at back-to-back Olympic Games, but has also raised the profile of women’s soccer throughout the country,” Lorraine Lafreniere, CEO of the Coaching Association of Canada, said in a statement.

“John’s work ethic, passion, and preparation combined with his dedication to the team, the program, and the country make him the well-rounded coach any leader would strive to emulate. We’re honoured to present John Herdman with the Jack Donohue Coach of the Year Award.”

Herdman led Canada to Olympic bronze in 2016, matching his team’s result four years earlier in London. The Canadian women are currently ranked fifth in the world.

“I’m humbled by this honour,” said Herdman. “I’ve worked in coaching for over 20 years but have never felt like I’ve done a day’s work, so to be recognized for doing something you love and is your absolute passion, it feels strange, in a good way.

“When I read about Jack Donohue, who he really was and what he contributed to people, I honestly feel like I’ve still got a long way to go to be that good.”

The award, part of Friday’s 2017 Petro-Canada Sport Leadership Awards Gala, is named after the late Jack Donohue, who led Canada to fourth at the 1976 and 1984 Olympics and was inducted into the Canadian Olympic Hall of Fame and Canadian Basketball Hall of Fame.

Recent Donohue Award winners include softball’s Mark Smith, basketball’s Lisa Thomaidis and athletics’ Gerald (Gerry) Dragomir.

Also Friday, diving coach Dany Boulanger of Levis, Que., was awarded the Geoff Gowan Award for lifetime contributions to coaching development. Lacrosse coach Duane Bratt of Calgary was the winner of the Investors Group National NCCP Coach Developer Award for inspiring and developing coaches in the community.

Baseball Canada received the Sheila Robertson Award, given to the national sport organization that demonstrates a consistent approach in valuing and recognizing the role of the coach within the organization, the media, and the public.

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CBC | Soccer News