Lesley Thompson-Willie, from London, ON, is a legendary coxswain of the Canadian women’s eight rowing team. She won a silver medal at London 2012, making her a five-time Olympic medallist and seven-time Olympian.
Her five Olympic medals tie her as Canada’s most decorated summer Olympian with Phil Edwards (athletics) and place her in a tie for second as Canada’s most decorated Olympian behind speed skater Cindy Klassen and speed skater/cyclist Clara Hughes who have each won six medals. She is the first Canadian athlete to win medals in five different Olympic Games.
Competing in a career total of 16 World Championships, Thompson-Willie has won eight medals (one gold, three silver, four bronze). Having competed consistently for Canada from 1980 to 2000, Thompson-Willie retired after the 2000 Olympic Games, only to return to the national team in 2006.
In 1994, Thompson-Willie, a graduate of the University of Western Ontario, was named to the Canadian Olympic Hall of Fame.