Bow Valley Pickleball Association

About BVPA

Bow Valley Pickleball Association
Bow Valley Pickleball Association ("BVPA") was incorporated under the Societies Act of Alberta as a Non-Profit Organization on April 25, 2022.

Mission statement
Our mission is to develop pickleball as a sport for all in the Bow Valley by promoting the health, physical and social well-being of its members through offering organized recreational and competitive play in an atmosphere of collegiality and sportsmanship.

2023 Board of directors and officers (please see below for brief bios)

  • President - Rosie Neil
  • Vice-President - Helen Thomson
  • Treasurer - Bill Foden
  • Secretary - Sheila Churchill
  • Director at Large - Doug Thomson
  • Director at Large - Murray Palmer
  • Director at Large - Michelle Vincent
  • Director at Large - Mike Layton

Committees (the search is on!)

  • Governance Committee - Michelle Vincent, Bill Foden, Helen Thomson
  • Play Committee – Rosie Neil, Doug Thomson, Helen Thomson, Mike Layton, Neil Skaluba, Sue Cowitz, Sheri Layton
  • Communication Group – Doug Thomson, Helen Thomson, Sheila Churchill, Mike Layton
  • Expansion Committee - Rosie Neil, Doug Thomson, Helen Thomson
  • Fundraising Committee – Bill Foden, Sheila Churchill, Michelle Vincent
  • Social Committee - Doris Foden, Michelle Vincent, Charlene Butler, Leanne French

BVPA Bylaws and Policies 

    BVPA Board Member Bios

    • President - Rosie Neil Rosie has played squash for years and is now a pickleball convert. She moved to the Bow Valley from Calgary in 2017 to be closer to the mountains to enjoy biking, skiing and hiking. Rosie has a background in sport administration and exercise physiology having worked in the Faculty of Kinesiology at the University of Calgary and with the Canadian Sport Institute. Rosie is excited to help develop and grow the pickleball community in Canmore.
    • Vice-President - Helen Thomson Helen is excited to join the 2022 BVPA Board of Directors. After a successful career in public education as a teacher, assistant principal and principal with Edmonton Public Schools, she ran a food processing business for 10 years until her retirement. For the past 12 years, Helen has been actively involved in many aspects of pickleball. She has played recreationally at the club level and competitively in tournaments in Canada, the U.S. and Mexico. At an organizational level, she served as president of the Edmonton Pickleball Club for three years. During that time, the Edmonton Pickleball Club grew from approximately 115 members to 750 members. She and her husband Doug regularly commute back and forth between Edmonton and Canmore.
    • Treasurer - William (Bill) Foden Bill was born in Toronto in 1958, raised in Toronto and Mississauga. Undergraduate study at UWO and U of T. Graduated Osgoode Hall Law School 1982. Called to the Bar of the Province of Ontario in 1984. Notary Public for the Province of Ontario. Member of the Law Society of Ontario. Avid sports enthusiast including hockey, squash, skiing, golf, biking, hiking and pickleball. Former coach of ringette, hockey, basketball. Former board member of the Pickering Ringette Association. Former member of the Durham Business Contact Exchange. Director of Durham Support Services (supporting those with physical or mental disabilities to live in their own homes). President of Rougemount Investment Corp., President and director of Dunbarton Investment Corporation. Member of the Assessment Review Board of the Town of Canmore. Moved to Canmore full-time in December of 2020
    • Secretary - Sheila Churchill Sheila brings a broad base of volunteer experience to the BVPA. An educator by profession, she retired from full-time teaching to focus on her young family when she moved to Canmore in 1990. For the next 18 years she was an active volunteer and organizer in the schools, on parent councils, with the Banff Alpine Racers as well as a part-time substitute teacher. When her daughters left for university she returned to work as an administrative assistant at the Alpine Club of Canada, a position she held for 9 years. After the sudden death of her husband in 2016, Sheila and three fellow survivors launched an initiative called Backcountry Safe to bring awareness to safety in the backcountry and push for change and accountability in the guiding community. Although pickleball is a relatively new activity for her, she is excited to help develop the sport in the Bow Valley.
    • Board Member at Large - Doug Thomson After a successful business career, Doug retired from full-time work in 2010 and with his wife Helen, bought a winter home in Phoenix where they discovered the sport of pickleball. They were soon “all in” with respect to the sport, playing in their community and in tournaments where they accumulated some medals. Returning to Edmonton in the summers, Doug became a founding director of the Edmonton Pickleball Club (currently 800 members) and took on roles as tournament director for several tournaments and refereeing. He “graduated” and took on the role as President of Pickleball Canada for 3 years. In 2019, Helen and he exited the US and purchased a property in Canmore where they got involved with the local club and in 2022 once again went “all in” to help the club with their formal start-up. Doug is a Fellow of the Chartered Accountants and a certified Director of the Institute of Corporate Directors.
    • Board Member at Large - Murray Palmer Murray has been instrumental to the growth of pickleball in the Bow Valley. He spent countless hours organizing, giving lessons, and encouraging those new to the sport. With Murray’s strong background in the arts and theater productions, assuming a leadership position in the Bow Valley Pickleball Association became an easy fit for him as he became a Founding BVPA Board Member. Eventually later in 2022, he assumed the role of Acting President and Treasurer. Murray plays regularly and thoroughly enjoys his time on court and as well as time behind the scenes in an organizational role.
    • Board Member at Large - Michelle Vincent Michelle is from the northern community of Bonnyville, AB, where she grew up on a dairy farm. She graduated with a Bachelor of Commerce, majoring in Accounting from the University of Alberta. She also has a Project Management Professional (PMP) designation and Technical Writing Certification. After leaving her 30 year career in the oil and gas industry, she leaned into her experience in governance to work advising boards on policies, procedures, competencies, and performance measurement. Michelle now volunteers to meet community members and offer her skills to fill in gaps that need filling: Canmore Folk Music Festival (Safety Coordinator), Volunteer Driver Program, and Helping Hands Volunteer Program. Past volunteer activities include: Town of Canmore Events Committee(Public Representative), Town of Canmore Grants Committee (Public Representative), Palliative Care Society of the Bow Valley board member. When Michelle isn’t gardening, hiking, skiing, playing pickleball or walking her dog, she and Larry are either travelling or enjoying a ‘quiet’ life in Canmore. As recent grandparents, they relish spending time with their granddaughter.
    • Board Member at Large - Mike Layton