Most Decorated Paralympian in Canadian History
Former Canadian Athlete of The Year
Chantal Petitclerc lost the use of both legs following an accident at thirteen. After the accident, her high school physical education teacher, Gaston Jacques, convinced her to take up swimming. Undoubtedly, swimming had a decisive impact on Chantal’s life. The sport eventually led her to explore wheelchair athletics. Chantal pursued wheelchair athletics and had a successful career. She participated in the 1992 Barcelona Olympics, and most notably in the 2008 Beijing Games.
She returned home from Beijing with five gold medals, two new world records, and one new Paralympic record. Chantal’s achievements made her the most celebrated track athlete in history. Also, she is the only Canadian athlete to win gold medals at the Olympics, Paralympics and Commonwealth Games. Chantal is among the remarkable athletes who serve as a profound reminder of the depth and breadth of our nation’s rich sporting landscape.
Chantal Petitclerc has received several recognitions for her sporting career. In 2004, she was named Personality of the Year by La Presse newspaper. Additionally, she has been appointed Chevalier de l’Ordre du Québec (2005), and received the Laureus International Award (2005). Chantal was inducted into Canada’s Sports Hall of Fame in 2010.
In 2012, Chantal became the coach and mentor of the UK track team for the London Paralympic Games. She was named the Chef de Mission for the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games, and Chef de Mission for Canada’s Paralympic Team in Rio 2016. Chantal is now an Paralympic commentator on CBC and Radio-Canada. She remains active in the sports community, and regularly participates in projects for many Paralympic athletics and organizations. In addition, she is a spokesperson for Défi Sportif and an ambassador for Right to Play.
Chantal Petitclerc was appointed by Justin Trudeau as a new independent member of the Senate in April of 2016. She has used her role to help the party build a better Canada.
Chantal Petitclerc shares her powerful story in this very inspiring keynote. In English or in French, Chantal speaks about the stages of her life. From the circumstances that lead her to wheelchair athletics, to her major victories, and challenges in between.
Without preaching, she uses her story to illustrate the importance of perseverance. She will teach your audience the importance of having ambitious goals, visions and dreams.