The George Brown Department of Athletics and Recreation has announced the appointment of Tom Valcke as Head Coach of the Huskies Men’s Baseball Program, a man with an extensive background at both the professional and amateur level.
Valcke arrives as one of the most decorated coaching hires in recent OCAA memory, a career baseball man with a lengthy and impressive resume. His baseball career spans more than 25 years and includes running Baseball Canada and coaching with Team Canada, establishing MLB’s Central Scouting Bureau in Canada and a role as CEO of the CanadianBaseball Hall of Fame.
He left his post at the Hall of Fame to pioneer Ontario’s first Baseball Academy, iCase, which has placed 14 of its players into collegiate baseball programs on scholarships in the past four years.
“My expectation coming in is that we’re going to field a quality player at every spot,” said Valcke. “Being strong up the middle of the diamond is key, so that is where I’ll be focusing my early recruiting and development efforts. I can’t wait to meet with our returning guys and get the ball rolling.”
George Brown Manager of Athletics and Recreation Melanie Gerin-Lajoie said that his mix of player and program development experience, stature in the Canadian baseball community and vision for the future were key factors in the hiring decision.
“Tom’s resume has such a range, from being a master NCCP facilitator to a head coach, to the IBAF’s Technical Commissioner at the 2008 Beijing Olympics. And in addition to that, he’s also a self-proclaimed fixer looking forward to embracing a new challenge,” said Gerin-Lajoie. “So between an influx of new scholarship funding, strong minor baseball partnerships in the works and Tom Valcke as a household name in Canadian baseball, we are going to start turning some heads.”
Valcke is planning on tapping his vast network immediately and hitting the recruiting circuit off the jump. “The evolution of College Baseball in Ontario has been impressive, and there’s a lot of talent out there. I understand these guys mindset and see no reason that we shouldn’t be building the province's premiere collegiate program. I can’t wait to hit the ground running.”
Valcke’s addition coincides with a broader re-focusing on athletics at the College says Gerin-Lajoie, one that bodes well for a Huskies program already making strides. “We are laying the foundation to run a top of the line varsity program across the board, and anexciting shift is taking place. It starts with trust at the top, which we now have. And with the diversity of academic areas that GBC has to offer to complement what we can do on the athletics side, we feel we’re in a great position going forward to recruit even more high-quality student-athletes to our family.”
“And who better to help steer this ship on the baseball side than someone with Tom Valcke’s pedigree” said Gerin-Lajoie. “This is a program that needs a strong culture and vision going forward, and he is the perfect guy to bring about the change we are looking for. We are extremely excited to have a coach of his caliber joining our program.”
For more information about George Brown Athletics visit georgebrown.ca/athletics.
For recruitment inquiries contact Tom Valcke at Thomas.Valcke@georgebrown.ca.