Doug Mitchell, former CFL commissioner and Calgary lawyer, has died at 83

Douglas Mitchell, a former Canadian Soccer League participant who went on to vary into commissioner of the league along with a distinguished Calgary lawyer and neighborhood chief, died on Wednesday on the age of 83.

Mitchell carried out briefly inside the CFL with the BC Lions and Hamilton Tiger-Cats and later went on to perform league commissioner for five years inside the Eighties. He moreover frolicked on the league’s board of governors, as a guide of the Calgary Stampeders, along with many alternative accomplishments in sports activities actions and the broader neighborhood.

Amongst his relations, he leaves behind his partner, former Alberta lieutenant-governor Lois Mitchell.

His family talked about in an e mail shared on Thursday that Mitchell died peacefully and all the sudden at residence.

“Everybody is aware of Doug was an inspiration to all who knew him and we’re going to proceed to share his legacy every day,” talked about Lois Mitchell in an e mail.

“Doug lived a particularly fully glad, achieved and fulfilled life in his 83 years. Doug made an impression on each of us and we uncover solace in realizing his life was full of pleasure. Everyone knows he would wish us all to reside on with power, goal and laughter.”

Amongst his many accolades, he was appointed to the Order of Canada in 2004, inducted to the Alberta Order of Excellence in 2007, inducted into Canada’s Sports activities actions Hall of Fame in 2019 and most simply recently inducted into the Canadian Soccer Hall of Fame in June.

Doug Mitchell stands at a clear podium to speak as he's inducted into Canada's Sports Hall of Fame in Toronto on Oct.  23, 2019. He wears a red scarf that reads Order of Sport, as he and the other 2019 inductees were the first to be presented with an Order of Sport Award.
Mitchell speaks in Toronto on Oct. 23, 2019, as he’s inducted into Canada’s Sports activities actions Hall of Fame. Amongst his many alternative accolades, Mitchell was appointed to the Order of Canada in 2004, inducted to the Alberta Order of Excellence in 2007 and inducted into the Canadian Soccer Hall of Fame in June. (Frank Gunn/The Canadian Press)

He represented the Calgary Flames as a result of the governor of the Nationwide Hockey League, sat as chair of the Canadian Athletic Foundation and the Southern Alberta Institute of Experience’s Board of Governors.

Mitchell was the nationwide co-chair of the regulation company Borden Ladner Gervais (BLG) and an avid sports activities actions fanatic.

From 1984 to 1988, he took a depart of absence from the company to perform the CFL commissioner.

Mitchell was moreover part of an possession group that bought the Calgary Stampeders in 2005. In 2012, the Calgary Flames grew to change into majority homeowners of the Stamps.

In a tweet on Thursday, the Calgary Stampeders offered their condolences, saying, “Doug’s dedication to our sport [and] our neighborhood was unwavering, his achievements acknowledged by an appointment to the Order of Canada [and] Alberta Order of [Excellence]. Rest in peace.”

Mitchell was a gifted athlete himself. He attended Colorado College on a hockey scholarship the place he acquired a bachelor of arts diploma in enterprise administration.

He then attended regulation faculty on the Faculty of British Columbia, the place he moreover carried out soccer as a middle linebacker for the UBC Thunderbirds.

In 2009, the sports activities actions center on the UBC Vancouver campus was renamed in Mitchell’s honor as a result of the Doug Mitchell Thunderbird Sports activities actions Centre.

In a tweet on Thursday, UBC president Santa Ono talked about he was “deeply saddened to be taught that UBC Thunderbird and neighborhood sport chief” Mitchell died.

“He was an inspiration to many and he’ll doubtless be vastly missed at his alma mater,” wrote Ono.

After collaborating in for the Thunderbirds, Mitchell went on to play inside the CFL for the BC Lions and Hamilton Tiger-Cats.

Then lieutenant-governor Lois Mitchell sits in a wooden chair in the Alberta Legislature in Edmonton as she delivers the throne speech from a black binder on March 8, 2018.
Amongst his relations, Doug Mitchell leaves behind his partner, former Alberta lieutenant-governor Lois Mitchell. Proper right here, Lois Mitchell delivered the throne speech inside the Alberta Legislature in Edmonton on March 8, 2018. She was the province’s 18th lieutenant-governor from June 12, 2015, to Aug. 26, 2020. (Jason Franson/The Canadian Press)

Whereas in regulation faculty, Mitchell married Lois they often lastly moved once more to Calgary, the place they’d 4 youngsters and he started a protracted approved career.

“Doug was instrumental inside the foundation of [Borden Ladner Gervais] and a frontrunner inside the merger which formed the company in 2000,” talked about John Murphy, nationwide managing affiliate and CEO at BLG, in a press launch.

“Doug was a extraordinarily regarded champion of sport in Canada and of feminine and male faculty athletes,” added Alan Ross, regional managing affiliate of BLG Calgary. “His legacy is big, and sport figures prominently in it.”

Mitchell sat on fairly a couple of boards and remained involved with sports activities actions for his full life.

He made numerous essential contributions to athletics, along with the creation of the U Sports activities actions athlete of the yr awards honoring the very best Canadian collegiate performers.

The honour — beforehand typically referred to as the Howard Mackie, BLG and Lieutenant Governor Athletic Awards — had been simply recently renamed The Honorable Lois Mitchell and Doug Mitchell U Sports activities actions athlete of the yr awards.

U Sports activities actions named one among its nationwide semifinal soccer video video games the Mitchell Bowl in his honour.

“My condolences to the Mitchell family on the passing of their patriarch Doug on the age of 83,” tweeted Jim Mullin, president of Soccer Canada.

“Few have contributed additional to the game of soccer in Canada, every on the skilled and newbie ranges.

“It’s a profound loss for our sport. His focus and fervour made him a pleasure to work with.”

‘Always gracious, taking part’

Deborah Yedlin, a buddy and president of the Calgary Chamber of Commerce, spoke to Mitchell for about half an hour last week all through a Stampede reception downtown on the Fairmont Palliser Resort.

They talked about soccer sooner than getting proper right into a dialog about Calgary’s future, she talked about.

“He talked about how optimistic he was regarding the metropolis,” Yedlin talked about. “He was really, really passionate about what he was seeing and feeling regarding the metropolis.”

She talked about Mitchell was on a regular basis gracious, taking part and cared deeply about people.

“He really wanted us to rise to the occasion, and he was on a regular basis encouraging people to do that,” talked about Yedlin. “And it was all about lifting all folks.”

She talked about she’ll keep in mind his smile, the “twinkle in his eye” and his optimism.

I consider now now we have an superior different to honor his memory in Calgary,” Yedlin talked about.

“Let’s assemble a model new soccer stadium and let’s title it the Doug Mitchell soccer stadium.”

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