Wisniewska, Vander Vies named chefs de mission for Paralympics, Parapan Am Games

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OTTAWA — Karolina Wisniewska and Josh Vander Vies have been named Canada’s chefs de mission for the 2024 Paralympic Games in Paris and 2023 Parapan Am Games in Santiago, Chile.

It's the first time two individuals have shared the chef de mission role.

Wisniewska, who was born in Calgary and lives in Montreal, was assistant chef for the 2022 Beijing Winter Paralympics.

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She competed in Para alpine skiing at the 1998, 2002, and 2010 Games, winning eight medals — four silver and four bronze.

The first Paralympian to be inducted into the Canadian Ski Hall of Fame, she is also a member of the Canadian Paralympic Hall of Fame.

"I will do everything I can to support and propel our amazing athletes, coaches, and team to incredible performances and positive experiences," Wisniewska said. "I also want all Canadians to see and feel the unique power of Paralympic sport."

Vander Vies, who was born in Sarnia, Ont., and calls Vancouver home, was an assistant chef at the Tokyo Paralympics in 2021.

He represented Canada in boccia at the 2004 and 2012 Games, teaming with Marco Dispaltro for a bronze medal in 2012.

“It’s exhilarating to have such a meaningful chance to help lead Team Canada,” Vander Vies said. "I’m committed to do my part and build an environment of sport pride, Canadian pride, and disability pride."

This report by The Canadian Press was first published May 8, 2023.

The Canadian Press