Canadian Olympic Committee Names Dimitri Soudas Executive Director, Communications

Former PMO Communications Chief Joins COC Executive Team

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TORONTO, Sept. 28, 2011 /CNW/ - The Canadian Olympic Committee (COC) today named Dimitri Soudas Executive Director, Communications. Soudas will report to Chief Marketing Officer, Derek Kent, effective October 1st.

Soudas, a highly respected communications leader, with a decade of experience in communications, marketing, advertising, public opinion research and media relations, served as Prime Minister Stephen Harper's Director of Communications and Chief Spokesman.

"Dimitri's leadership experience in communications, his background in government and understanding of global affairs, makes him an outstanding addition to our executive leadership team," said Chris Overholt, Chief Executive Officer of the Canadian Olympic Committee. "His work ethic, energy and communications professionalism will help drive our organization and the Canadian Olympic Team brand aggressively forward."

Soudas, a fluently bilingual Montreal native, will provide overall direction, management and a strategic view for all COC communication activities, both internally and externally. He will be a key corporate spokesperson and be responsible for managing its brand message. He will play a key role in driving communications strategies with its stakeholder and partner groups: athletes, National Sports Federation's (NSF's), Organizing Committees, Sport Canada, broadcast partners, and business partners. He will manage the COC communications team and be the lead communications representative at Olympic Games. Soudas will be based at the COC's office in Toronto and will also work from the Montreal and Ottawa offices to ensure that the national scope of his responsibilities will be fulfilled.

''I am thrilled to join the Canadian Olympic Committee and looking forward to working with athletes, NSF's and leaders like Marcel Aubut, Chris Overholt and Derek Kent and the entire Canadian Olympic Team," said Soudas. "I am extremely proud to join this great Canadian organization at such an exciting time in the lead-up to the London Olympic Games in 2012."

In addition to his executive communications responsibilities, Soudas was a key advisor to Prime Minister Harper on Quebec issues. He has proven experience in communications and brand building nationally and internationally. Soudas moved to Ottawa in 2002, shortly after Mr. Harper became leader of the Canadian Alliance and Leader of the Official Opposition. In 2006, Soudas joined Prime Minister Harper in government, initially as press secretary. He was promoted to director of communications in spring 2010.

Soudas is fluent in English, French, and Greek and speaks Spanish.

About the Canadian Olympic Committee

The Canadian Olympic Committee is a national, private, not-for-profit organization committed to sport excellence. It is responsible for all aspects of Canada's involvement in the Olympic Movement, including Canada's participation in the Olympic, Youth Olympic and Pan American Games and a wide variety of programs that promote the Olympic Movement in Canada through cultural and educational means. For news and information, visit the COC website at www.olympic.ca and find the team on both Facebook (Canadian Olympic Team) and Twitter (@CDNOlympicTeam).

SOURCE COC

For further information:

Riley Denver, Communications Coordinator, Canadian Olympic Committee
Tel.: (416) 324-4143, Email: rdenver@olympic.ca

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