Sunday, 8 December 2013

One of the hardest working women in hockey just might be Kristen Lipscombe

While there are legions of devoted volunteers who have formed the backbone for the growing sport of women’s hockey, there are also those that are also watching the future of the game unfold at its highest levels. Working primarily with Canada’s Under-18 and Under-22/Development programs, Kristen Lipscombe is part of an exciting future. 

Among a remarkable group of women whom are Hockey Canada personnel dedicated to helping the women’s game grow, Lipscombe is at the heart of the action. Having travelled the world, she has been part of some of Canada’s greatest victories and biggest heartbreaks. 

As a member of the Hockey Canada Communications team, Lipscombe not only handles media requests, she conducts web site work, composes articles and even conducts player interviews that broadcast on the Hockey Canada site. Perhaps her most rewarding work emanates from the opportunity to teach the U18 and U22 young players in how to deal with the media. Not only is she providing these young hopefuls with mentorship, but she is like a big sister to them. 

Hailing from the hockey hotbed of Kingston, Ontario, it almost seems like it’s too much of a coincidence. While the city has produced Don Cherry, Kirk Muller and Doug Gilmour, it has also brought Jayna Hefford and one-time resident Genevieve Lacasse to the international hockey stage as well. There is no question that Lipscombe was destined to be part of the unfolding and exciting future in women's hockey.
In addition to her work with Hockey Canada, Lipscombe has also contributed to the Canadian Women's Hockey League (CWHL) with providing editorial consultation along with articles. One of her finest was an outstanding interview with Trina Crosby, the mother of Sidney Crosby, who was appointed to the CWHL's Board of Governors for 2013-14. As a side note, she would freelance for the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review as a correspondent from Cole Harbour, Nova Scotia. 

Devoted to the game, it is not uncommon to see Lipscombe undergo 12 hour workdays and working many days in a row. While it may be a demanding schedule, it is a labour of love for Lipscombe. In addition to covering Hockey Canada women’s events such as the U18 and U22, she has also covered the National Under-18 women's nationals, the Esso Cup and the National Girls Championships which were first held in Winnipeg in 2013.

Currently, she is covering the Canadian national women's team barnstorming tour of Alberta. Competing against several Midget-AAA squads consisting of young men, it is an effort to prepare for the 2014 Sochi Winter Games. 

While Lipscombe's experience as a competitive player reached its twilight during her tenure with the nationally ranked Wilfrid Laurier Golden Hawks, it would prompt the beginning of a new chapter. From helping to cover the growth of the game to participating in charitable causes with fellow colleagues and with notable players, she continues to carve a legacy as more than just a chronicler, but as a builder and a friend.

Photo credits: Lipscombe with helmet (Hockey Canada Images)
Posing with Genevieve Lacasse and Clarkson Cup (Brandon Taylor)
Interviewing Hazel McCallion with Fran Rider to her left at 2013 IIHF Women's Worlds (Facebook)
With Carla MacLeod and her gold medals (Facebook)

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