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2022 Planning Committee

Diane Randell, Committee Chair

Diane is one of the founding members of the Abreast of ‘bridge Dragon Boat Team and with a dedicated team of Rotarians launched the first Festival and Race in Lethbridge. Diane is excited to be Chairing the Planning Committee as we plan the 2022 Festival following a 2 year hiatus due to the Pandemic. We are thrilled and look forward to celebrating our 20th Anniversary with our teams and the community throughout the Festival in June.

Karen Johnson, Race Chair

Karen Johnson joined the sport as a team building activity with other City of Lethbridge employees in the first year of the festival, 2002, Dragn’ R Butz. Finding a new passion for the sport, Karen was instrumental in starting Team ID just after the 2003 festival in hopes of paddling through a longer season and travelling to other festivals.
Karen was assistant coach of Team ID for the 2007 and 2008 seasons. In 2008, the Rotary Festival made a concerted effort to improve the skills of local dragon boaters and decided to “beef up” the training provided to the festival teams and Dave Hunt and Karen agreed to become Head Coaches. Karen has been the race chair of the ATB Financial Lethbridge Rotary Dragon Boat Festival since 2010.
Karen has completed the Level A of the National Coaching Certification Program, and obtained Dragon Boat Canada Community Coaching Certification and the Competitive Coaching Certification. She has taken Dragon Boat Canada Officiating Level One, Critical Eye Coaching sessions, and several paddling technique workshops. Karen has attended Dragon Boat Conferences in Vancouver, Toronto, and Montreal. Karen has officiated in Lethbridge, Edmonton, Vancouver and Regina. She has paddled in Kelowna, Regina, Calgary, Edmonton, and Elkwater, in the World Masters Games in New Zealand, and the Pan Pacific Masters Games in Queensland Australia, Pickering Dragon Boat Club Paddle camp (Tampa), and Pan Am International Festival (Tampa) . Karen is the Vice President for the Dragon Boat Association of Southern Alberta, and one of the coaches for the Coulee Classic Dragon Masters Womens crew.

Chris McLean, Site Manager

Chris has been on the Dragon Boat Committee since 2004 and has all the t-shirts to prove it! She has been Treasurer, Chair, Secretary, and Site Manager, and helped at the equipment trailer for practices for several years. She has seen the festival grow from the initial 16 teams to over 65 teams. She has also seen the festival grow from local and southern Alberta teams, to inter-provincial with teams from Saskatchewan and British Columbia, and now International with a team from Montana. Chris enjoys the excitement and fellowship of the Festival but does not care to get wet. Chris is a member of the Rotary Club of Lethbridge East and is proud of the work that Rotary does both locally and internationally with the proceeds raised by the festival.

Deb Stephen, Registrar

Deb is the Registrar and has been involved in Dragon Boating since 2006.  She has been the Crew Manager for a variety of mixed or women’s teams over the years.  Although Deb has never been a paddler she has passed her enthusiasm for the sport onto to daughters who both paddle in the Festival  This is  Deb’s first year as Registrar.

Trish Jackson, Treasurer

Trish is the Treasurer for the Lethbridge Dragon Boat Festival, a role she has held on and off since 2012. As the Treasurer, she tracks the income and expenses for all festival activities, and provides guidance to the Festival Organizing Committee and Executive. She started as a volunteer on the dock for local practices, and the amazing people connected to the event lured her in!

Valerie McQuaid, Entertainment Chair

Valerie has been helping book the entertainment for the Dragon Boat festival for the last 10 years and is excited to be back event planning this year. She books all the entertainment and creates the line up for the weekend, connecting with bands and entertainment from all over southern Alberta. Valerie started volunteering with Brian and Jill to help with the entertainment planning ten years ago, and the excitement and community of the festival encouraged her to continue with the festival over the years.  

Geri Hecker, Awards Chair

Geri has taken on the role of Awards Chair for the Lethbridge Rotary Dragon Boat Festival 2022.  She has enjoyed her participation as a volunteer during the past dragon boat festivals.  During those festivals she volunteered in the beer garden, participated in the opening and closing ceremonies and was a race participant.

Tymmarah Mackie, Ceremonies Chair

Tymm is the new Ceremonies Coordinator for the Lethbridge Dragon Boat Festival. This is the first year she will experience the festival and is happy to be part of the Festival Committee. Tymm loves all things cultural and celebratory and is excited to be working on plans for the Opening and Closing Ceremonies as well as the Rose Ceremony that happens on Saturday.

Todd Brown, Sponsorship Chair

Todd is the chair for Sponsorship and Grants and connects with the community to seek opportunities for business and community to help support the event.

This is Todd’s first year on the ATB Lethbridge Rotary Dragon boat festival and has in the past volunteered in the beer gardens with his Rotary Club. 

Don Robb, Marketing Chair

Don is president of Rotary Club of Lethbridge Sunrise. He had a long career as a school music teacher and continues with many musical activities. Don is delighted to work on behalf of the Dragon Boat Festival 2022 

Hannah Dupuis, Marketing

Hannah  is passionate about Lethbridge and is thrilled to be helping with the Dragon Boat Festival this year. Her first year on the committee, she created a new logo and helped with updating the website, creating graphics, and social media.

Karla Pyrch, Volunteer Coordinator

Karla Pyrch has been involved in organizing many large events in Southern Alberta and is excited to join the Dragon Boat Festival Committee this year as the Volunteer Chair. Karla is excited to work on this fun event and invites you to be in the centre of the action as an event volunteer!

Greg Tiffin, Secretary

Groove-Daddy, a name given to me by my Rotary Friends when I joined the Rotary Club of Lethbridge Sunrise on March 8, 2012. I have a passion for drumming of all types and especially enjoyed the performances with the Lethbridge Community Band.  My working career of 38 years was with the Canadian Food Inspection Agency. 

Rotary has become a very meaningful part of my life.  It provides me with many opportunities to provide service to others. The Dragon Boat Festival is one such opportunity.

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