List of Inductees 2020
Kathy Tough enjoyed an outstanding career as a high performance athlete achieving success as a member of the National Team as well as moving to the beach where she was a dominant fixture on the Canadian beach scene for five years.
Kathy was a key member of the University of Calgary Dinos' 1989 CIS women's volleyball championship team. A second team All-Canadian in the 1988-89 season, Tough was named MVP of the tournament as the Dinos captured their second national title.
Kathy was named to the Junior National Team in 1987 and 1990 before joining the National Senior team where she was a member from 1989-1992 and again from 1995 to 1996. She was named as a tournament All Star at the Norceca Qualifying event as the best server. She went on to represent Canada at the 1996 Olympics in Atlanta, where she captained the national team to their 10th place finish.
Following her indoor career, Kathy transitioned to the beach to continue to compete. Kathy went on to win two national beach championships and she was voted by her peers as the Most Valuable Player and Best Hitter of the 1999 season. Kathy also scored a pair of top 10 finishes on the International World Series. She retired in 2001 after winning Gold at the Francophone Games held in Canada and then pursued a role in coaching and giving back to the sport through her leadership with beach volleyball in Canada.
One of Kathy’s coaching highlights was serving as the men’s Canadian Team Coach at the 2007 Pan Am Games in Brazil. She remembers practicing and the Brazilians’ couldn’t believe Canada had sent a female coach for the men. Under her direction, the Canadian men just missed the podium to finish fourth at the Games. Kathy stated “I was proud to be their coach and of course to be a female coach against the Brazilians. Anything is possible.”
Kathy is certified as a NCCP Level 3 coach and a NCCP Level 2 Course Conductor. In addition, she was the coach for the U19 team at the 2005 World Championships in Bermuda. She also served as the Assistant Coach at the University of Calgary and was a high performance coach in 2001. She also provided leadership for the beach program in Canada serving on the High Performance Beach Committee in 2006-2007 and as the Regional Beach High Performance Manager for the Western Region (BC, AB, SASK, MB).
Several of Kathy’s highlights were participating at the 1997 World Championships in Los Angeles and playing in Toronto in the FIVB International tournament at AshBridges Bay. She remembers showing up to practice with the German team and the stadium was huge and amazing. On the side of the stadium there was a huge graphic of her digging and it covered the entire stadium. “It was unbelievable” she remarked.
Kathy remembers other highlights from her career including the lifelong friendships made along the way. She also remembers being cut from the Jr. National team in 1988 even though she had made that same team in 1987. She didn’t let that slow her career down and returned home and put her head down and helped her University team win the CIAU National Championships in 1989. She would then go on to make the Senior National Team that summer.
We are honoured to induct Kathy Tough as an athlete in the Volleyball Canada Hall of Fame; she is most certainly deserving of this recognition for her many years competing for Canada and for her outstanding career representing Canada both indoors and on the beach.