Mike co-founded the Academy in 2008 with support from the Alberta World Cup Society. Under his leadership, the Academy has grown into the largest and most successful National Development Centre in Canada – with the distinction of being one of two National Training Development Centres in the country and the only one in Western Canada.
Mike brings both national and international experience, as well as, a keen insight to developing successful, high performance Athletes and Coaches for the National Team. Prior to founding the Academy, he served as the Coach of the National Team – producing Canada’s most successful Olympic Winter Games in history, winning Gold (Women’s Sprint) and Silver (Women’s Team Sprint) at the 2006 Olympics in Torino, Italy.
Alberta World Cup Academy Athletes consistently dominate the Nationals – earning a total of 87 podium positions to date. Some Athletes have exceeded expectations, making their international debut while still with the Academy. Four Academy Athletes qualified for the Olympic Winter Games 2014 in Sochi, Russia and two qualified for the Olympic Winter Games 2010 in Vancouver.
Mike is equally successful developing Coaches for both the National Team and Clubs. Current Coaches, Chris Jeffries and Stefan Kuhn, have both achieved their NCCP Level 3 designation and are studying for their Level 4 at the National Coaching Institute in Calgary. Eric Groenveld, former Assistant Coach, is now the Head Coach, Foothills Nordic Ski Club in Calgary.
Mike’s naturally competitive spirit combined with his innate Italian compassion, patience and persistence drives Athletes and Coaches, inspiring them to excel both on and off the skis.
Mike shares his lively home in Canmore with his two daughters who really make his world turn, his fiancé, and their two rescue dogs. He’s a serious cyclist (as the local bike mechanics can attest), an enthusiastic hockey player and loyal fan of the Montréal Canadiens. Go Habs Go!