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Meet Andrew Gilmour, the NWT School Sports Association’s first executive director

Andrew Gilmour is the very first executive director of the NWT School Sports Association. One of his goals is to grow sport across the territory through more connections with communities. Photo courtesy of Andrew Gilmour.

Andrew Gilmour is no stranger to Yellowknife, having called the city home since 2015. If you’ve seen him before, you’ll know he’s worked in the education field, most recently with Yellowknife Education District No. 1.

But he has a new job now and it’s one he’s admittedly still getting used to.

Gilmour was hired to be the first executive director for the NWT School Sports Association, a job he started back in January. Since taking on the role, he’s looked after the Cager basketball tournaments and he’ll be working his first Super Soccer tournament this week.

Before he became the new guy in charge, phys-ed teachers would’ve been the ones to organize this tournament and others.

“It was a lot of extra work for them and quite overwhelming,” Gilmour said.

The response to being overworked meant school boards getting together and looking into a proper association, Gilmour added. He doesn’t work for any one school in particular, but rather a territorial sport organization (TSO).

“It’s its own society,” as Gilmour described it.

Every TSO has its own society in place, said Gilmour, with boards and executives who steer the direction of their given sport.

When Gilmour was hired, no such society existed for him, he said. He spent most of his first day at work reaching out to gym teachers and school boards superintendents and getting people for the board of directors to get the society up and running.

“The first month was a lot of relationship building,” said Gilmour.

Despite the milestones, Gilmour seems to have a pretty solid blueprint.

“A lot of what I’m doing is based off what the phys-ed teachers have been doing before me for years,” he said. “I’ve been going to them and learning from them and they’ve been so great.”

Because the job is new, it’s hard for Gilmour to decide on what the coolest part about it is, though there are some things on the horizon.

“The thing I’m most excited about is I’m going to be doing a needs assessment for all of the communities and what they need for their school sports,” he said.

As for Super Soccer, Gilmour said he’s looking forward to it.

“We had 53 teams register for junior and 29 register for senior,” he said. “It’s going to be exciting to see how it all works out.”

While tournaments are nice, Gilmour is looking to do more in terms of after school programs. He’s also looking for growth, both for sport and the players involved.

“I would like to see more events where there’s less competition and more connection,” he said, using an example of a tournament that also features high-level coaches come up and do seminars with other kids. “I see sport as an avenue for connection and growth. I think that would be a great direction to go in with school sports.”

About the Author: Devon Tredinnick

Devon Tredinnick is a reporter for NNSL Media. Originally from Ottawa, he's also a recent journalism graduate from Carleton University.
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