Canadian Olympic Committee Welcomes Josée Verner as Minister of Canadian Heritage

    TORONTO, Aug. 14 /CNW/ - The Canadian Olympic Committee (COC) welcomes
Prime Minister Stephen Harper's appointment of Josée Verner as the new
Minister of Canadian Heritage, Status of Women and Official Languages.
    "With less than a year until the 2008 Olympic Games, the Canadian Olympic
Committee looks forward to working with Minister Verner to discuss a greater
commitment to sport investment in Canada during the lead up to the next
federal budget," said Chris Rudge, COC Chief Executive Officer. "With proper
government support towards our summer sport technical program, Canada's
athletes will be able to achieve greater podium success at the Olympic Games
in Beijing in 2008 and London in 2012."
    The COC will continue to work with Secretary of State (Sport)
Helena Guergis and the federal government to advocate for increased support to
Canada's Olympic athletes.
    The Road To Excellence program, which was launched in June 2006, was
created as an initial action plan to start the process of creating a more
coordinated, effective Canadian sport system resulting in world-class
programs, policies and financing that will place Canada amongst the top
nations at the summer Olympic and Paralympic Games. The summer sport program
targets a top 16 placing for Canada at the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing and a
top 12 result at the 2012 Olympic Games in London.

    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 and Pan American Games and a wide variety of
programs that promote the Olympic Movement in Canada through cultural and
educational means. For more information, see the COC website:

For further information:

For further information: Eric Michalko, Manager, Communications,
Canadian Olympic Committee, Office: (416) 324-4146, Cell: (416) 528-6742,

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