Our Team

 

Wayne Simmonds, Founder
Simmonds grew up in Scarborough, Ontario, the third of four sons, in addition to one daughter, born to Cyril Simmonds and Wanda Mercury-Simmonds. Simmonds spent the majority of his minor hockey career playing A and AA hockey in the east end of Toronto, including the Minor Midget Toronto Aces in 2003–04 season of the Greater Toronto Hockey League. After several GTHL AAA players graduated the following summer to junior hockey, Simmonds moved up to the AAA level for the first time with the Toronto Jr. Canadians Midgets of the Greater Toronto Hockey League in 2004–05. Two years after being passed over in the OHL Draft, Simmonds was selected as an 18-year old by the Owen Sound Attack in the 6th round (114th overall) in the 2006 OHL Priority Selection.

He spent his major junior career playing two seasons in the Ontario Hockey League from 2006 until 2008, with the Owen Sound Attack and the Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds. He also played for Team Canada at the 2008 World Junior Ice Hockey Championships. While playing with the Jr. Canadiens, Simmonds became friends with Chris Stewart, another black player who went on to an NHL career. The two would later purchase a house together in Toronto, where they live during the off-season. On August 15, 2012 Philadelphia Flyers signed forward Wayne Simmonds to a six-year extension. For more on Wayne please see the “Our Story” page.

 

Richia Bissoondath, President
Richia is an event enthusiast who is devoted to making a difference by providing opportunities for the community. She brings with her a HBA in Communications from Wilfrid Laurier University, post-graduate certificate in both Public Relations and Project Management. With an extensive volunteer profile, her experiences have developed skills and relationships to lead WRHW in a positive direction. As a Scarborough native she has seen first hand the need for an organization like WRHW in the community and looks forward to her 3rd year with the organization.

Jessica Princis, Event Coordinator
Jessica is currently an event coordinator in the sponsorship and events department at Molson Coors Canada. Her background from George Brown College, special event planning sparked her passion and drive for executing spectacular events. Working with WRHW has given her the opportunity to give back to the kids and the community she grew up in, while developing everlasting relationships with others who make this special day possible. This will be Jessica’s 2nd year with WRHW.

Ann Heron, Logistics Coordinator
Ann is an administrative assistant at Trident Elevator. Before joining Trident, Ann worked as a sales representative in the food and drug industry for over 20 years.

With her diverse background in charity work and many fundraising events, Ann brings a creative, strategic perspective to the organization. Her dedication to helping others and supporting local hockey is evident in her work.

Ann’s personal connection to Wayne and the local hockey organizations in the area allows her to provide insight into where we can help the most. On top of her professional achievements, Ann is a wife and mother of 2 daughters and 1 son whom have all dedicated their time to WRHW for the past 3 years also.

 

Ashleigh Mair, Communications Coordinator
Ashleigh grew up playing competitive hockey from a young age. Having the opportunity to work with WRHW allows her to give back to the community that helped shape her into the person she is today. 

With a career in public relations and communications Ashleigh looks forward to creating awareness around WRHW and its mission.

 

Alexandra Muszynski-Kwan, Communications Coordinator
Through her studies she possesses a strong knowledge and background in developing social media strategies, an interest which she has applied to volunteering with Social Media Week Toronto. An affinity for languages led Alexandra to study German as well as Political Science and History, at the University of Toronto.  After graduating with an Honors Bachelor of Arts in 2012 she began a year-long post-graduate program in Public Relations and Corporate Communications at Centennial College.  In her spare time Alexandra enjoys playing sports and looks forward to using her skills with WRHW.

 

Dave Patterson, Community Coordinator
After volunteering at the inaugural WRHW event, Dave realized the important role that hockey can play in a youngster’s life. To see how happy these children were and to see the smiles on their faces, reminded me of how he felt when he was a kid, and how real the hopes were for him to one day be an NHL all-star. Although he’s long since given up on my dream of making it to the professional leagues, he is so proud to be involved with WRHW. It was great to spend the day with so many ambitious young hockey players, for whom those dreams of making it to the NHL are still a possibility.  

Every kid deserves the opportunity play this game, have a pair of skates on their feet, a stick in their hand and a dream to achieve.

Luke Hana-Fraser, Volunteer Coordinator
Luke is a dedicated social service worker with interests in empowering young people to not only strive for but to accept nothing less than an active, energetic fun filled future. He believes in the positive effects of role modeling and the importance of sport, exercise and teamwork in the lives of youth. Being a part of WRHW means being a part of a larger team and sharing the gift of sport specifically the Canadian classic, hockey. An enjoyable moment for him is being part of a charitable organization that gives local youth the opportunity to come face to face with an NHL hero.

Kate Horrigan, Volunteer Coordinator
Kate is a committed helping professional with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Law and Psychology, who primarily services those with mental health and addiction. She came from a single income home and played in registered sports leagues since she was in grade one. This allowed her to witness first hand the high costs and sacrifices that families endure when placing their children into organized sports. She is a firm believer in a healthy body healthy mind philosophy and attributes her sports involvement during her youth to her personal and professional success later in life. As an active executive committee member with WRHW she brings forward the intention of reducing barriers for underprivileged youth wanting to engage in sports activities.

 

Darryn Renaud, Sponsorship Coordinator
Hockey has always been a passion and a large part of Darryn’s life. That passion also spread into his professional life where he has had the opportunity to work with the World Under 17 Hockey Championships, Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment and the Scotiabank Hockey Sponsorships Department. Darryn completed the Sport and Event Marketing post-graduate program at George Brown College in September 2013, and is eager to make a splash in the sponsorship marketing industry. He believes that organized sport can teach invaluable life lessons, and that everyone should have the opportunity to participate without barriers. Darryn is excited to contribute his skills and knowledge to the team and continue the great success of WRHW.

Jennifer Kouroupois, Sponsorship Coordinator
After working with junior hockey teams in the OHL and OJHL for the past 5 seasons in various roles, Jennifer is currently working with Pointstreak Sports Technologies. She completed her undergraduate degree at University of Toronto, and graduated from a Sports Business Management Post Graduate program at Durham College. 

Jennifer has volunteered extensively with a variety of sporting events and teams such as the 2012 MasterCard Memorial Cup, Hamilton Bulldogs, Athletes in Action and the 2014 World Junior Hockey Tournament. She is looking forward to her second year with WHRW.