Nicolas Gill
CEO and High Performance Director 

After having been the most successful judoka in Canadian judo history with two Olympic medals and three World Championships medals, Nicolas Gill chose to dedicate his life after sport to developing high-level athletes. He has been National Team Coach starting in 2005 and performed the dual functions of High Performance Program Director for Judo Canada as well as National Team Head Coach from 2009 to 2016. He is now both CEO and HPD.

Patrick Esparbès 
COO Assistant Director 

After a career as an athlete, during which he was a national team member for a few years, Patrick was involved in judo on several levels. He served as technical director and head coach of Alma Seiko Judo Club for four years and then became CEO of Judo Québec for 12 years. He is a certified dojo instructor level 3 and joined Judo Canada in 2016 after four years at the head of Soccer Québec.

Marie-Hélène Chisholm
High Performance Manager

National Team member for nearly 14 years, and 5th at the Athens Olympic Games and at the 2005 World Championships, Marie-Hélène has her level 5 certification from the NCCP. Marie-Hélène also coached the provincial team from 2008 to 2009. She then became Assistant Coach of the women’s national team from 2009 to 2013. She has been the High Performance Manager since 2013.

Andrzej Sadej 
Sport Director 

Andrzej Sadej is a former Polish national team member. He was eight time Polish national champion.Throughout his career, he won four European Championships bronze medals, and was a three-time medallist at the World University Championships. Andrzej has a Master’s degree from PE Academy, in Wrocław, Poland. Since the 1990s, Andrzej has been one of the iconic faces of Canadian judo. His perseverance and dedication have allowed the advancement of judo in the country on several levels. He first made his mark as a national coach from 1990 to 1996, after which he decided to work in the administration of Judo Canada. His purpose has always been to bring Judo Canada to the forefront of international competition. In 2014, Andrzej returned to the tatami as the Paralympic Program’s national coach for the visually impaired athletes of Judo Canada, giving a new breath of life to this program. In 2018, Priscilla Gagné became the first female world medallist in the Paralympic program of Canadian judo.

Nicolas Brisson
Sport Development and Event Manager

Nicolas started Judo in France when he was just a kid. He then moved to the Netherlands, where he became the Junior national champion in 1999. In 2000, after earning his bachelor’s degree, he went back to France to continue his studies and trained with the French national team and at his club, the Athlétique Club Boulogne-Billancourt. During that period, he was number 1 in France and competed in the biggest international judo tournaments, notably the Paris, Tokyo and Moscow Grand Slams, as well as the European and World championships. At the professional level, Nicolas worked as a financial analyst for Accuracy, a consulting firm in corporate finance. Since moving to Canada in 2018, Nicolas worked with Judo Canada for three months to help with the organization of the 2019 Montreal Grand Prix. His new role as the Sport Development and Event Manager, will be a continuity to this first experience with Judo Canada. 

Lea Sheffield 
Sport Development and Event Coordinator 


Lea Sheffield has been part of the judo community her entire life. Both her parents are former members of the national judo team and opened a dojo in Stouffville (Sheffield Judo Club), where Lea started training at a young age. Lea has obtained her Honours Bachelor of Arts from the University of Toronto and an Advanced College Diploma in Journalism at the Centennial College. Before working for Judo Canada, she was a Marketing and Communications Intern for the Canada Games Council and the Event Coordinator for Skate Canada.

Francine Latreille
Accounting, Grading and Membership Services


Francine comes from a world where volunteering is an asset and she is learning to be able to excel in the tasks that she does. Judo Canada provided her the ability to learn more so that she can take on various tasks including accounting tasks, setting up a system to have a better archive, along with other tasks to be able to provide information and respond to inquiries from our members and Provincial Associations. Our role and responsibilities are very important for our membership at every level. She comes from working with different sports, such as hockey, where volunteering is highly valued, and also has a background with working for a law firm, which gives her the gift of listening to others’ needs. She joined Judo Canada in 2009 in the office in Ottawa. An important quote that she practices is “intellectual curiosity drives to be a lifelong learner.”

Émilie-Claude Leroux
National Office and National Training Centre Coordinator

After an career as an athlete, during which she was a national team member for 8 years, Émilie-Claude was involved in judo on several levels. She is a certified dojo instructor and a member of Judo Canada Gender Equity Committee since 2013. She joined Judo Canada in 2015, and since January 2019, she has become the National Office and National Training Centre Coordinator. 

Sasha Mehmedovic
National Coach – Senior

As a member of the national team for over 10 years, Sasha represented Canada at the Olympic Games in 2008 and 2012. The highlight of his career remains his 7th place at the 2007 Senior World Championships in Brazil. He has medalled at numerous high-level events. After competing in the 2013 Senior World Championships, Sasha retired from the national team to become the junior team coach. In April 2015, he became the women’s team assistant coach. In October 2019, his role changed again, this time to become the senior national team coach.

Jean Pierre Cantin 
National Coach – Junior/U23

9th at the Barcelona Olympic Games, Jean-Pierre was a member of the Canadian National Team for over 10 years. He was head coach of the junior national team from 2001 to 2009, and he headed a judo club in New Brunswick and was the provincial team coach from 2009 to 2015.

Alexandre Émond
National Training Centre Coach

Alexandre started judo at the age of 6 at the judo club in Varennes. From an early age, Alexandre took part in several Canadian championships. He became a member of the national team at the age of 20, leading him, a few years later, to compete in the London Olympic Games in 2012. Since January 2017, Alexandre has joined the national team as a coach for athletes under the age of 18 who attend the Judo Canada National Training Center (NTC) in Montreal on a part-time basis. His role then evolved to include all young athletes training at the NTC.

Janusz Pawłowski
Assistant National Coach

Janusz is of Polish origins and stood on several World podium. He has won two Olympic and three World Championships medals. Janusz has been the head coach in several judo clubs and federations since 1991. In 1996, he coached three Italian athletes at the Atlanta Olympic Games. From 1997 to 1999, he was the head coach of the Polish team, and two of his athletes were selected to compete at the Sidney Olympic Games. He was the head coach of the Bezigrad judo club in Slovenia from 2000 to 2004, and head coach of the Club Centro Ginnastico Torino in Italia from 2004 until his arrival in Canada.

Tiffany Hunting
Head Therapist

Tiffany joined the Canadian Judo National Team in November 2016. She came to us from the Institut National du Sport du Québec, where she worked with the National Short Track Speed Skating program for several years, building up extensive experience in high-performance sports physiotherapy. She has also worked as head therapist for the McGill Women’s Rugby and Rugby Québec teams. Tiffany holds a Degree in Physiotherapy from McGill University, as well as a master’s degree in Human Nutrition. A passionate athlete and a former rugby and basketball player herself, Tiffany has always enjoyed working with athletes, and has volunteered her skills with several amateur sports teams, as well as during large events such as the Pan Am Games.

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