2022 Mentor Coach

Dan Proulx


  • Provide women intern coaches with ongoing mentorship from a qualified mentor coach, with a national or international coaching development opportunity, and enhanced professional development and learning opportunities
  • Connect all participating women intern and mentor coaches in an ongoing supportive network
  • Increase the number of high performance women coaches in Commonwealth sport in Canada

Mentor Coach: Dan Proulx, ChPC

“This is an incredible opportunity to learn from exceptional facilitators, coaches, and mentors.”

Sport: Cycling

Occupation: Dan is the Head Coach of Canada’s national cycling team.

Intern Coach: Catharine Pendrel

Athletic History: Dan is a former competitive swimmer, triathlete, cyclist, and a multi-time Ironman triathlon finisher.

Why A Coaching Career? Throughout his athletic career, Dan had many incredible coaches who inspired him. One of the most notable was a swim coach at the Cascade Swim Club named Jeff Coulter, whom Dan describes as “absolutely amazing; it is no surprise that so many of us went into coaching or teaching. He empowered us to go after our dreams and to constantly seek improvement.”

Coaching History: Dan’s first coaching role was in 1985 as a swim coach with Special Olympics in High River, Alta., where he coached Special Olympian Val Gladdish, “an amazing, inspiring opportunity” that taught him how to teach. He also coached the High River Otters.

Dan next coached with the Cascade Swim Club in Calgary. By1990 he was head coach of the University of Calgary Triathlon Club. Clubs he subsequently founded and coached include the Triathletics Sport Club, the Olympic Oval National Cycling Centre Junior Program, and the Elitewave Sports, all in Calgary.

Dan’s international coaching experience includes the 1996 World Triathlon Championships, the 2008 Pan American Track Cycling Championships, the 2009 World Cyclocross Championships, numerous World Cups, world championships, Pan American Games, Commonwealth Games, and Olympic Games in 2008, 2012, 2016, and 2021. From 2009 to 2021 he was head coach of the national mountain bike team. In late 2021 he was appointed head coach of the national team. Dan has numerous medallists to his credit, including mountain bike cyclist Catharine Pendrel, a 2011 world champion and 2016 Olympic bronze medallist.

Known for his creative leadership style and innovative coaching techniques, Dan is Chartered Professional Coach (ChPC), a Level 4 National Coaching Certification Program (NCCP) coach, has a social sciences degree from the University of Calgary, a high performance coaching diploma from the National Coaching Institute-Calgary, and a post-degree professional teaching certificate from the University of Victoria, and is a NCCP Master Learning facilitator.

Coaching Awards: Dan won Petro-Canada Coaching Excellence Awards in 2011, 2014, and 2016 and is a recipient of the General Motors Making Dreams Possible-High Performance Grant, the Petro-Canada Olympic Torch Scholarship Fund, and the Petro-Canada FACE coaching grant. His abilities were recognized early in his coaching career when the Cascade Swim Club in Calgary presented him with the Phil Bickley Memorial Award for Team Leadership. Dan, whose hometown and current residence is Calgary, serves on the board of directors of the Canadian Sport Institute-Calgary.

Importance of the CSC WCIP to Dan: For Dan, the CSC WCIP is an incredible opportunity to learn from exceptional facilitators, coaches, and mentors. He feels as though her is learning as much from the program as the newer coaches are. Because high-performance sport is incredibly challenging, the CSC WCIP is providing some of Canada’s best with concrete tools and approaches they can use to achieve greater success. He feels honoured to be part of the initiative.

Importance of the CSC WCIP for Catharine: “The internship is a good chance for Catharine to learn from national team coaching peers in different sports and contexts. Obviously, Catharine knows the world of cycling inside and out. It's my belief that the best coaches know more than just their own sport. They are students of all sport. The CSC WCIP program has so many outstanding mentor coaches and fellow interns with a wealth of experience to share. It's an incredible cohort. Catharine also has so much wisdom to give to this program.”