FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: February 14, 2018
VANCOUVER, BC —ProMOTION Plus is pleased to announce the two recipients of the
2017 In Her Footsteps awards: FIFA soccer referee Michelle Pye of North Vancouver and UBC basketball coach, Deb Huband of Vancouver.
To date, the In Her Footsteps program has honored more than 50 influential female leaders and ambassadors across the Province of British Columbia, women who are renown for their accomplishments both at home and on the international stage.
Pye is one of only four International FIFA women referees in Canada and Huband is the most successful woman basketball coach in UBC history.
In Her Footsteps, celebrating BC women in sport, is an annual recognition program hosted by ProMOTION Plus, celebrating women who have demonstrated excellence in their field of sport and/or recreation, brought pride to the province and had a significant positive impact in the world of sport and recreation in BC.
Each year the program publicly recognizes two women who will be profiled in the In Her Footsteps exhibit at the BC Sports Hall of Fame, inspiring our youth through their extraordinary accomplishments.
Pye started refereeing soccer in her hometown of Kamloops at age 13. After moving to Vancouver in 2001, she worked her way up from regional, provincial and national assignments and in 2007 was nominated and accepted by the FIFA panel and given her International badge. She reached the pinnacle in the soccer world in 2015 when she was one of two Canadian referees chosen to represent Canada at the women’s World Cup in her own country. Only 29 referees from around the world were chosen to participate in this prestigious event.
Over the term of her 11 years, Michelle has also participated in four World championships and many Olympic and World Cup qualifying tournaments. She refereed her first International game in 2008, Canada versus Brazil at BMO Field in Toronto.
Michelle is a teacher in North Vancouver and the mother of three children.
In her 23rd season as coach of the UBC women’s basketball team, Huband can boast of being the longest serving female head coach of sport at UBC over the past 100 years. And the most successful. With an overall winning percentage of .660, Huband led UBC to three straight national championships, 2003-04 to 2007-08. They were runners-up on three other occasions.
Huband also coached the Canadian women’s team to a silver medal at the 1999 Pan American Games and is one of a very few who has both played and coached at the Olympic Games. As a player on the national women’s team, she led Canada to fourth-place finish at the 1976 Montreal Summer Olympics, Canada’s best-ever finish at the Olympics. She still holds the record for the most points scored in a Canadian U women’s basketball game, 50, while a student at Bishop University.
With close to 500 coaching career wins at UBC, Huband is an inductee in the UBC and Basketball BC Halls of Fame.
Huband and Pye join the esteemed group of women who are honoured in the In Her Footsteps exhibit including Senator Nancy Greene Raine, Charmaine Crooks, Allison McNeil and Marion Lay, to name just a few.
Michelle Pye and Deb Huband will be publicly recognized during Sport BC’s Athlete of the Year Awards banquet, March 28, 2018 at the Westin Bayshore hotel.
For further information: Sue Griffin, Past Chair ProMOTION Plus T: 604 809 9140 E: firstname.lastname@example.org