After an exceptional career, Stingers women’s hockey associate head coach Caroline Ouellette became only the 10th woman inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame.
This has been a remarkable year for the Stingers coach, as she was also inducted into the University of Minnesota-Duluth Athletic Hall of Fame, named to the Ordre national du Québec, and selected as an Honoured Member of the Hockey Hall of Fame in the Player Category.
As a player, Ouellette won four Olympic gold medals, six IIHF World Championship gold medals, and much more. But the people close to her emphasize how her off-ice impact is an even bigger part of who she is and what she brings to women’s hockey.
Ouellette first joined the Stingers as an assistant coach in 2016, and was named full-time associate head coach in 2021.
She also founded the Caroline Ouellette Girls Hockey Celebration in 2014. The idea to start this not-for-profit organization came from a conversation with her partner Julie Chu about how to help continue to grow women’s hockey.
“I think when anyone looks at her resumé, yes they see a Hockey Canada player, but if they look more, they’ll see as a coach what she’s done, and what she does with her not-for-profit, which is really tremendous and special,” Stingers women’s head coach Julie Chu said.
Ouellette’s induction into the HHOF was a huge moment for any women’s hockey player, but in particular for her family.
“It was a really special moment for not only Caroline but for our family and I think for women’s hockey players,” Chu said. “It’s been an exciting time for all of us and I think that to be able to go out and push the envelope the way that Caroline has, as a player, as a coach, and as an ambassador of the game, has really been awesome to see, and I see it every day. So for her to get recognized for all those elements is really, really great.”
The Stingers are also extremely proud of Ouellette for this achievement and are honoured to work with her every day.
“She has a huge impact on our team, she’s always ready to work with us, teach us new techniques, make sure we push ourselves and exceed our expectations as players but also as people,” Stingers women’s hockey captain Emmy Fecteau said. “I count myself lucky to get to work with her. Caro isn’t just an unbelievable athlete, she’s also an unbelievable person and someone who brings so much to women’s hockey. She’s an idol for me and she inspires me every day.”
Since Ouellette joined Concordia, the Stingers have won two RSEQ Championships in 2022 and 2023, a National Championship in 2022, and silver at Nationals in 2023.