Canada women’s national wheelchair basketball team head coach Bill Johnson was awarded the 2014 Coaching Excellence Award by the Coaching Association of Canada in Ottawa last Friday at the Petro-Canada Sport Leadership Awards Gala.
The forty-one year old Winnipeg native took on the head coach position in 2009 after three years as an assistant coach for the team. Earlier this year, he guided his team to a first place finish at the home hosted IWBF women’s world championships, and a third place finish at the Toronto Challenge. In 2013, he coached the team to a third place finish at the Osaka Cup. The recent performance of the national team has been a marked improvement from where they were even two years ago, when the team finished sixth at the 2012 Summer Paralympics and a bronze medal at the 2010 World Championships.
Wheelchair Basketball Canada Executive Director Wendy Gittens is quoted by the organization yesterday as saying, “Bill and the Canadian Women’s Wheelchair Basketball Team seized the day and moved Canadians to the edge of their seats in June when they captured world championship gold in a truly dramatic fashion. It was a profound moment that will remain etched in the minds of Canadian wheelchair basketball fans for years to come. Congratulations to Bill on the leadership and excellence you displayed in guiding our athletes to the top of the podium.”