Paul Cote to Lead Canada's WEG 2018 Organizing Team

Thursday, August 14, 2014
Posted by Equine Canada

Equine Canada has announced Mr. Paul Cote as the CEO for the 2018 FEI World Equestrian Games
Equine Canada has announced Mr. Paul Cote as the CEO for the 2018 FEI World Equestrian Games

Ottawa, ON - It is with great pleasure that Equine Canada announces Mr. Paul Cote as the newly appointed CEO for the recently awarded 2018 FEI World Equestrian Games™, which will held at the Bromont Olympic Equestrian Park in Bromont, Quebec. As Chair of the Bromont Bid Committee, Cote's leadership was integral to the bid process over the last four years. His tireless and unwavering support was a key contributor leading to the FEI's unanimous decision to award the Games to Canada. 

This will be the first time in the history of the Games that the prestigious event has ever been held in Canada and only the second time outside of Europe, with the first time being  2010 in Lexington, KY.

"We worked very hard during the last four years to obtain the Games," stated Cote. "I am ready to work just as hard - if not harder - over the next four to deliver the best WEG ever organized. I am excited for our sport, for our athletes and I'll do all I can to make everyone proud to be part of the Canadian equestrian family."

Cote, a married father of three children, was first introduced to equestrian sport when his daughter took up dressage 11 years ago at the age of seven. His passionate interest in the incredible opportunity of bringing the Games to Bromont is as a result of wanting to create a lasting legacy to the sport in Canada -- from the grassroots to the elite level. As an Equine Canada board member and the provincial President of the Fédération équestre du Québec, Cote was also the President and Chief Executive Officer of Via Rail Canada, an independent Crown Corporation which operates the national passenger rail service on behalf of the Government of Canada, until his retirement in 2010. Not one to slow down, Cote has recently been working with Montreal Metropolitan Transit Authority in various executive roles and recently as a special consultant.

"Paul has done a fantastic job as the Chair of the Bid Committee, so I am sure he will do a fantastic job as the CEO of the Organizing Committee," said Michael Gallagher, who represented Equine Canada on the bid committee since the initial stages and was also on the CEO Selection Committee.

Already a world class facility, the Bromont Olympic Equestrian Park currently hosts FEI jumping, dressage, eventing and driving competitions. The Games will significantly boost the local, provincial and Canadian equestrian communities as well as the local and provincial economies.

The 2018 Games will be the largest single sport event ever held in Canada which could see 4,500 accredited participants, from 65 Countries, and an estimated 500,000 spectators.

"Hosting the Games is going to be a huge undertaking that I am confident Paul will be able to execute with great success," said Equine Canada CEO, Eva Havaris. "He has the passion, drive and corporate experience to organize this prestigious event and make the rest of Canada proud as hosts."

The Games are held every four years, in the middle of the Olympic cycle. The eight FEI disciplines are all included on the competition schedule. The inaugural FEI World Equestrian Games were hosted in Stockholm (SWE) in 1990. Since then the Games have been staged in The Hague (NED) in 1994, Rome (ITA) in 1998, Jerez (ESP) in 2002, Aachen (GER) in 2006 and Kentucky (USA) in 2010. The 2014 Games will be held in Normandy, FRA, from August 23 to September 7.