Please tell us a little bit about yourself.


I was raised in Burlington, Ontario and fell in love with soccer when I started playing at the age of 4. Both my parents were incredibly supportive and my father was a coach on many teams as I grew up. Through school, I played soccer, basketball, and began a love of snowboarding. I started playing rep (travel) soccer for the Burlington Sting (BYSC) when I was 12; a team that made it to the national championship and won in 1996. I stopped playing soccer and basketball competitively when I entered university, and have since played recreational soccer, beach volleyball and have taken up golf (or

attempt to play golf, haha). Today, I coach my 7 year old daughter’s soccer team in Niagara. I have a 7 year old daughter and a 5 year old son. Both are active in soccer, dance, karate, and skating. I am an Associate Professor in the Department of Sport Management at Brock University.


Please share a story about an internal or external barrier you have faced.


Having suffered an injury that caused me to stop playing competitive soccer, I struggled internally with my identity for a long time. This caused me to remove my commitment to playing sport for several years.


How did you overcome that barrier? What skills did you develop in sport that helped you overcome your barrier?


I was able to find outlets and mentors who helped me reconnect with sport in different ways. I got my degree in sport management and found another identity (through) sport that wasn’t strictly tied to competition on the field. There is a sense of loss and being lost when a deeply engrained athletic identity is quickly taken away; I was grateful to be in a sport (management) environment – that led me to my current profession – where I could still be a part of the sport world I loved while I attempted to navigate my own feelings of self-doubt and struggle for identity.


If you had one word to describe your character, experiences or philosophy what would it be? Why?




Given life’s ups and downs, I am constantly reflecting on my actions and the actions of others, in an attempt to respect how and why people act the way they do. I am a firm believer that everyone is capable, strong, and thoughtful person – we must respect people’s differences, experiences and backgrounds before making judgements.


If you wanted to motivate a young female athlete to #BuildHerUp, what quote would you use? 


“Feminism [in sport] isn’t about making women strong. Women are already strong. It’s about changing the way the world perceives that strength.” —G.D. Anderson


Twitter: @ShannonKerwin1