Statement by David Gourlay
February 16, 2018
This morning, I submitted my resignation as President of the Ottawa Champions Baseball Club.
6 years ago today, I began a journey to support professional baseball and established a community-driven movement, the Champions for Ottawa Baseball. The goal was to approach baseball differently and bring the community into the dialogue. This led to Ottawa landing a new professional franchise – the Ottawa Champions, – our 2016 CanAm Champions !
I have been humbled to be a part of the baseball fabric as a passionate advocate for our city – it is a role that I valued and I am proud of many collaborations and partnerships with community leaders, businesses, charities and fans from across Ottawa.
We have accomplished great things together.
As I now pursue other community initiatives, I know that professional baseball has a strong place in our community and I am grateful for the opportunity to make a direct impact. Look at what we did – we established the Miracle League of Ottawa that opened in August 2015 and was Canada’s second fully accessible baseball diamond. We hosted the first-ever professional baseball All-Star game as part of Ottawa 2017. We have established the Ottawa Champions Foundation and this Summer, we will open the Ottawa Baseball Hall of Fame and Exhibit.
With every Ottawa Champion who threw a curve, grabbed a liner, stole a base and cleared the fence on to Coventry, I had a great sense of pride knowing we were building memories. I thank the fans – this has been for them and I will be cheering on our Champions this season and beyond. I want to thank Miles Wolff for the opportunity to serve as President and Hal Lanier for his on-field leadership to secure a Championship and our true Ambassador.
I would also like to thank Mayor Jim Watson, Councillor Bob Monette and a special thank you to former Mayor Jim Durrell who first believed in my passion for the relationship between baseball and our community as an Honourary Patron of the Champions for Ottawa Baseball.
Finally, to my wife Danielle and our daughter Sophia for their unconditional love and support as I worked on this passion for baseball and community – I am forever grateful.