In sports with a small number of participants, parents often are recruited as volunteers. That’s what happened in the case of Trevis Boyd. His daughter Gracie, 20, took up speed skating a decade ago and Trevis soon found himself involved in the sport. He learned that speed skating at the club and provincial level needed officials, so the recent Winnipeg arrival decided to devote some of his time to that area. He and wife Caroline also were building a new business called Black Pearl Roasting Coffee of the World in our city. Caroline became a volunteer and presently is the interim president of the Manitoba Speed Skating Association. Gracie is coaching at the St. James club after putting her skating career on hold while she attends university.
From that beginning, where he counted laps and knew little about the complexities of judging the sport, Trevis has risen to the level where he now officiates at national and international competitions. A highlight came when he was assigned to work as a corner judge for the long track races at the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver. As a corner judge, his major responsibility was to watch for infractions on the corners. To volunteer at the Olympics, he had to be in the position to give up 27 days of his working life to his sport, which he said was well worth it.
"For me, it was being part of the greatest show on earth," Trevis said. "It was exciting to get into events and the field of play. When the oval cleared after the final race, I went over and climbed on the podium with two other officials."
Since the Olympics, Trevis has continued to be assigned to major events. In 2011, he refereed at the Canada Winter Games where Gracie was skating for Team Manitoba. This winter he managed the corner judge team at the World Sprint Championships and served as chief referee for the women’s competitions at Canada Cup 2, both at the Calgary oval. He also was in Fort St. John, B.C., where he refereed at the Canadian Age Class Long Track Championships. He raved about the facility that has a 400-metre Olympic oval on the mezzanine floor with two hockey rinks below. The season isn’t quite over for Trevis. He’ll be officiating at the Max Bell Arena from March 22 to 25 when the provincial association is hosting national and Western Canada short track championships. In addition to all his officiating work, Trevis serves as vice-president of competitions for the MSSA. The Level III official also has developed and conducted clinics for budding referees.
"It’s become my hobby and I enjoy doing it so much," Trevis said. He plans to volunteer for the 2014 Olympics in Russia with the goal of being named as a speed skating official.