When you think of Humber’s Athletics department, the name Ray Chateau should be synonymous with the program.
It’s been quite the year for Sault Ste. Marie native Chateau- claiming the 2023 OCAA Administrator of the year, adding to his laundry list of a resume.
Earlier in the year Chateau was named the CCAA Athletics Director of the Year for 2022. He won Gold in 2023 CICan’s Awards of Excellence. He even had his banner raised to the rafters in Humber’s North Campus gym.
Chateau had his banner forever raised to the Humber rafters after his dominant run with the Men’s Golf team from 2001 to 2013.
But for him, Humber’s multiple championships are his biggest accomplishment.
“The winning makes it all worth it, and a lot of my fondest memories have been attending those national championships, and there’s been many,” Chateau said. “My mindset has been let’s not only have success provincially but let’s be the best in the country.”
This year Humber Athletics won more national championships than any other Canadian College this year – a record eight gold medals. Humber also boasted twenty-three CCAA Academic all-Canadian student-athletes.
Chateau started at Humber coaching the Men’s Golf team from 2001 to 2013 with a nations-best ten national titles.
He became Athletics Director in the 2013-14 school year, taking over from Doug Fox, who spent 35 years with the program.
“I had big shoes to fill,” said Chateau.
“Doug Fox was extremely successful during his time here; he was well-liked and essentially built the entire varsity program. Above all else, he was a friend, so I wanted to meet the standards he set while also moving things forward,” said Chateau.
As Director Chateau has now led Humber to a nation’s best 24 CCAA Championships across seven sports for both men and women, a provincial best 84 championships, and an additional 84 CCAA academic all-Canadian student selections after a decade at the helm.
“Now ten years later the program is significantly better than it was, but nothing has been an enormous jump from one year to the next,” said Chateau.
Chateau has focused on improving facilities and equipment at both the North and Lakeshore campuses. He’s focused on building the strength and conditioning programs, enhancing mental and physical therapy services, growing fitness opportunities and resources for both the athletes and students in general, and focusing on student excellence in the classroom to build successful careers outside the students’ respective sports.
“Going from the golf coach to the position I’m in now gives you a much broader perspective; It’s totally different. I was focusing on about eight or nine athletes and all of a sudden I’m responsible for nearly 300, plus the staff, coaches, events, facilities and all that,” said Chateau.
Chateau is also proud of the higher participation and graduation rates among his athletes and says their success will help Humber attract future students.
“All the underlying support services we provide for the student-athletes and staff allow them to want to be here, to represent Humber, compete on the highest level and ultimately finish their Humber experience with success,” said Chateau.