Skip to main content Accessibility features

I am honoured to join this impressive team and help serve a growing population. Abilities Centre is a world-class venue that has just started to recognize its potential

By: Meagan Marques and Mikaeli Cavell 

As of March 1st, 2024, Abilities Centre is excited to welcome a new leader to our team! Stepping into the role of President & CEO will be Michael Cvitkovic, an award-winning executive who has 25+ years of professional experience. Michael brings a wealth of knowledge and expertise within the sport and recreation sector and comes to Abilities Centre after significantly contributing to many successful sport organizations across Canada. Some of the institutions that have benefited from Michael’s leadership in the past include:

  • Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment and the Toronto Raptors Basketball Club,
  • Tennis Canada and Rogers Cup Toronto,
  • Toronto Pan Am Sports Centre,
  • Ontario Basketball Association
  • Canadian Elite Basketball League (CEBL)
  • The 2010 Canadian Paralympic Team, and
  • The 2017 North American Indigenous Games

As Abilities Centre moves onwards, we are looking forward to Michael’s impact on participants, members, partnerships and community. Abilities Centre strives to bring a better, barrier-free life for all Canadians, through reimagining accessibility and redefining the way Canadians live, work and play. Locally we work to co-design innovative, accessible solutions that address the needs of our community. Michael, who has called Whitby home for more than a decade, is excited to bring his expertise to Abilities Centre:

I have been blessed with a career that has taken me around the world, but this is the first time I will be able to make a meaningful difference with something I'm passionate about in my own community. We have an incredible, knowledgeable and determined staff with a reputation for excellence. I'm really excited to join the team and continue its great work.

Prior to Michael’s start date we had the opportunity to learn a little more about the incoming President & CEO.

What are you looking forward to over your first 100 days?
Michael Cvitkovic: The first 100 days is a special time for new employees, including those in a leadership role. I believe in trying to be a sponge in the early days, learning all of the great things that are going on in our amazing organization, with an emphasis on People, Processes, and Plans.

How do you see yourself championing Abilities Centre Mission - Reimagining accessibility and redefining the way Canadians live, work & play?
MC: I think it starts with awareness. Abilities Centre is one of the most accessible venues in Canada with world-class programming that will help reshape society's view on accessibility. We need to continue to find innovative ways to change the dialogue and engage more people who can use our facility and the programs we have created.

What is important in non-profit leadership?
MC: Recognizing the vast similarities between non-profit and for-profit organizations. Business is business. Our mission and our vision may differ, but in order to achieve our collective organization goals, we must ensure the business runs efficiently. This means creating an inclusive environment with innovative staff, introducing sponsors who will also benefit from associating with your non-profit organization, and aligning with like-minded partners, while keeping customer/member satisfaction at the forefront of our daily lives.

Do you have any hobbies outside of work?
MC: I am heavily involved in the sport of volleyball as an official, a coach, and most importantly a dad. I am typically on a volleyball court 4-5 nights a week. One of my fondest volleyball memories is officiating a sitting volleyball international match between Canada and the United States. 

We are thrilled to welcome Michael to the Abilities Centre community.

I am very excited to welcome Michael as the new leader of Abilities Centre. His passion for creating an inclusive community, combined with his executive leadership skills will motivate and empower our dedicated staff to new heights. 
~Sharon Cochrann, Board of Directors Chairperson

For more information on this Abilities Centre Leadership update, check-out the press release:

About the Authors:
Meagan Marques (she/her) is the Senior Manager, Research at Abilities Centre. She holds a Masters in Health Sciences and is completing her Doctoral Degree in Medical Science. Meagan is passionate about sharing the amazing work Abilities Centre does and supports the evaluation of programs and services. With over 12 years of experience research settings, she also supports research initiatives of internal program and with external partners.

Mikaeli Cavell (she/her) is a Manager of Research and Program Evaluation at Abilities Centre and holds a Masters degree in Health Sciences (Kinesiology). She supports the evaluation of the centre's internal programming and services, helping to share experiences with the broader community. She also supports research initiatives on inclusion issues that Abilities Centre engages with across Canada. 

back to top