Dr. Hayley Wickenheiser is considered one of the best female hockey players in the world. Seven world championships, six Olympic appearances, five Olympic medals — she is a titan of sport and a leader both on and off the ice. Today, Wickenheiser is the assistant general manager of player development for the Toronto Maple Leafs as well as a community leader, medical doctor, and businesswoman who inspires audiences to give their best in everything they do.
A first-ballot Hockey Hall of Fame inductee, Wickenheiser’s hockey IQ is highly respected in both the male and female game. She made hockey history as the first female player to notch a point in a men’s professional game. She was also the first woman in history to have played in/coached at four NHL development camps with the Philadelphia Flyers, the Edmonton Oilers, and the Toronto Maple Leafs. Wickenheiser joined the Leafs as assistant director of player development in 2018 before being promoted to assistant general manager in 2022.
Wickenheiser’s ascent to the top of her sport started in Shaunavon, Saskatchewan where at age 15 she became the youngest member chosen for the Canadian Women’s National Team. Her Olympic career spanned 23 years, five Olympic medals, and two sports as she also competed in softball at the 2000 Games. In 2014, Wickenheiser was Canada’s official flag bearer at the Sochi Olympics and served on the International Olympic Committee’s Athletes Commission.
In 2017, Wickenheiser announced her retirement from the National Women’s Team. In addition to her work with the Leafs, she is now a resident medical doctor in family medicine — a pursuit she has dreamt of her whole life. She is also a bestselling author having released her first book Over the Board: Lessons from the Ice in 2021.
Wickenheiser has earned many accolades throughout her career, including being named on Sports Illustrated’s “Top 25 Toughest Athletes in the World” and twice named to their “Power 50 in Sports” list. She is also one of QMI Agency’s “Top 10 Greatest Female Athletes in the History of Sports”, a member of the Saskatchewan Sports Hall of Fame, one of Canada’s “Top 40 Under 40”, and an inductee in both Canada’s Sports Hall of Fame and Canada’s Walk of Fame. In 2014, Wickenheiser was awarded Canada’s highest honour when she was appointed to the Order of Canada in recognition of her athletic achievements and contributions to the growth of women’s hockey.
Wickenheiser’s passion for sport is paralleled by her desire to give back to the community through her work with dozens of philanthropic organizations, including Lace ‘Em Up, Jumpstart, KidSport, Project North, and Right to Play — organizations dedicated to ensuring kids of all financial and cultural backgrounds can play sports. She is also the founder of the world-renowned personal and athletic development weekend, The Canadian Tire Wickenheiser World Female Hockey Festival, which provides mentoring and growth opportunities for young athletes around the world.
Wickenheiser holds several honourary degrees from institutions across Canada, as well as a Masters in Kinesiology from the University of Calgary, where she also studied medicine.