October 1, 2023

INSIDERS INGRAIN INEQUITY & INIQUITY

While inequity has been a part of the CCAA Hall of Fame since its formation, iniquity has also become an issue in recent years as insiders have crossed the line to accommodate the clique.

Instead of levelling the playing field for those who represented institutions that are not current members of the CCAA and those who represented more than one institution, insiders have rigged the processes for the CCAA Hall of Fame.

The Operating Code now states "The CCAA office will maintain a list of eligible builder candidates, from which the CCAA awards committee shall select a minimum of two annually from the host conference." Following the Hall's inaugural class of builders in 2014, a total of 12 builders have been enshrined in seven subsequent inductions which averaged out to less than two per induction class.  Before the changes, minimums and maximums were not specified for any category.

While the builder category has a defined minimum and an undefined maximum, the opposite is true of the athlete and coach categories. The Operating Code notes "The host conference will nominate up to six (6) athletes and up to two (2) coaches." In the seven most recent induction classes, a total of 24 inductions have occurred in the coach category which averaged out to over three per induction class.  The likelihood of another hockey coach entering the CCAA Hall of Fame is diminished.

Not only is there a new cap on the number of inductees in the athlete category, each gender must be equally represented in upcoming induction classes. Currently, a 50/50 split exists in the Hall's athlete category among those from non-tournament sports even though the CCAA has held 152 men's championships and 120 women's championships over a half century in the four disciplines. The 11 men and 11 women to receive the Hall call in the athlete category participated in basketball, soccer and volleyball.  Hockey has no inductees in the Hall's athlete category.

The number of hockey players eligible for the Hall has been reduced significantly due to recent criteria updates. Among those slighted are athletes who were members of multiple national champions and received at least one CCAA individual honour.  As a result, four hockey players who received gold medals and individual awards totalling four are no longer eligible.

Following the inaugural induction class, each nomination required a "CCAA institution in good standing support their nomination’. Now the Operating Code indicates that "The awards committee reserves the authority to nominate builders to the Hall of Fame who meet the defined builder criteria but are not currently represented by a member institution and/or member conference, or due to special circumstances." Athletes and coaches with ties to institutions that are no longer members of the CCAA continue to be stiffed by the governing body.

To add insult to injury, the CCAA has opted to give athletes and coaches the cold shoulder when it comes to the CCAA Hall of Fame induction ceremony. Like builders, athletes and coaches selected will get two tickets to the induction ceremony. Unlike builders who will still receive accommodation for one night (and transportation to and from the banquet venue if they are from "outside the conference"), athletes and coaches must cover their own costs from this point forward.

According to the CCAA's latest strategic plan, one of the guiding principles is "we act with integrity and strong leadership" and one of the values is "we are committed to the principles of integrity, fair play, equity and diversity". The authors of the strategic plan include the current president of the organization and the current chief executive officer of the organization as well as a past president of the organization who is now a director.  If one of the three -- or anyone involved with the changes for that matter -- had a moral compass and a backbone, this travesty would have not seen the light of day.


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