Week 32: Janis Cookson

Sport Developer


Please tell us a little bit about yourself. 


I was fortunate enough to have athletic skills that allowed me to become a high performance athlete in the sport of women’s softball.  I was offered a 4, year athletic scholarship to the University of Arizona where I obtained a BSc in Public Recreation Administration.  I became a member of the Canadian National Women’s Softball Team and won Gold and Bronze Pan Am Games Medals.  I was inducted into the Canadian Softball Hall of Fame in 1997.  I have been working within the Canadian amateur sport system for over 30 years at the Provincial, National and Government levels.  I have worked on a number of different sport events, including the 2010 Winter Olympic Games.  I am currently Manager, Sport Development/Pan Am Centre for the City of Markham for the past 4 years.


What qualities in a teammate for sport or work do you look for? Why?


Integrity, Integrity, Integrity…it is a value that is the foundation of all of my life’s principles because it helps guide me in everything I do.


What is something you learned by being on a team? How does that apply to your work?

I learned that when a group of people have the same vision or goal that anything is possible.  My team and I at work share the same vision and passion for the Markham Pan Am Centre and for Sport Development that’s why we have been able to produce so much in a very short time with limited resources.


What is one piece of advice would you have for young female athletes today?


Have passion for what you do, develop a vision, strive for perfection, but know it’s ok to catch excellence in all that you do on and off the field.