Goodbye & Thanks to Christopher Castonguay

OCUA's Executive Director heads out west

IT'S OFFICIAL. After 8+ years of service to the organization, OCUA's longest serving Executive Director, Christopher Castonguay, is moving on from his position. His last day of work will be Friday, April 23, 2021.

What a ride these past years have been. When I reflect on my experience working at OCUA, there are so many accomplishments that bring me pride. The interesting people I met along the way, experiences that are hard to find elsewhere, but most of all a great deal of humility in recognizing how impactful joining this little Frisbee community was for me.

I know it's preaching to the choir, but how great is Ultimate? A sport that teaches self-governance, fairness, teamwork, and all while balancing competition and spirit with all walks of life - it really is an incredible activity. Maybe there is some truth to this sport being some kind of cult. Oh, and then there are the parties...

When I think back on some of the milestones that were achieved during my tenure at OCUA, I feel profound appreciation for all the people that sunk their heart and soul into this community. If working at OCUA has taught me one thing, it's that everything is a team effort. I will always sing the praises of the staff and volunteers that I've had the pleasure of working with over the years.

Here's a quick snapshot of some of my fondest accomplishments and projects: 


  • New leagues like: Parity League, 5v5 Social Leagues, 3:3 gender-equal ratio leagues, Grandmasters, Indoor Youth league, Junior Comp Dev, Womxn League, and so many more.
  • Allowing members to pay online. (For those too young to remember, when I first started, payments were mostly done by cheque)!
  • Finding new central fields for the membership, lining sports fields as proper Ultimate fields, and improved usage of the UPI fields.
  • New partnerships with Elevate Ultimate, BE Ultimate, Clocktower, Big Rig, and the Ottawa Outlaws. 
  • Modernizing OCUA's office and IT systems at almost no cost to the members to provide better service.
  • The SWAG!! I love spotting members throughout Ottawa proudly sporting one of the many OCUA jerseys designed over the years.
  • Surviving a pandemic. While some communities didn't fare as well (some had zero league play for a year), I was proud to be able to work within health guidelines and still provide Ultimate this past summer, fall and winter season.


  • Halting and reversing the downward projection of a shrinking membership. Simply put, OCUA hadn't seen over 4,000 members in a long time.
  • Doubling youth & junior numbers from 500 to almost 1,000 in 3 years.
  • Increasing our youth and junior opportunities with the continued support of high-level coaches and new development-focused training.


  • OCUA's renewed focus on special events and ensuring their sustainability: No Borders, League Playoffs, Britannia Beach, GGs Holiday Hat, Godzilla, O-Town Throwdown, and starting the Ottawa High School Cup.
  • Selling out No Borders every year and showing off UPI to Ultimate players across the country.


  • Project Callahan - multi-year cross-board Project Callahan - what an endeavour. All that hard work will result in saving OCUA money and protecting the future of UPI.
  • Growing OCUA to a million-dollar organization!

- Christopher Castonguay

P.S. Please read some kind comments below from people I've worked with in the past. 
Note: For those interested in joining the OCUA team as its newest Executive Director, please stay tuned for a job posting opportunity.
   It's a bittersweet moment to send Chris Castonguay off as OCUA's Executive Director. Chris has been an instrumental part of OCUA's community for so long, and has done so much for the organization. As the past President and current member of OCUA's Board of Directors, I have seen firsthand how Chris was pivotal in reversing declining summer team membership by growing youth and junior programming so that OCUA experienced summer league growth in 2018 for the first time in a decade.

   Chris is never scared to take risks and has an uncanny ability to sniff out growth; he grew OCUA's u29 league from infancy to a major source of revenue and critical avenue for recruiting long-term members. He has worked hand-in-hand with Jessie Robinson to revitalize the recreational womxn's scene, introduced OCUA's first ever gender vision statement and led implementation of new gender-balanced leagues.

   But nowhere were Chris's skills more on display than in steering OCUA through the COVID-19 pandemic, when he was able to get leagues running safely within one week of the provincial announcement that we were allowed to return to sport. Thanks to his strategic thinking, financial savvy, and commitment to giving members the chance to play safely, OCUA has survived the pandemic with our staff and office intact, and we are well positioned to jump back on a growth trajectory once the vaccine rollout is complete.

  Away from the Board, I have always appreciated Chris as a member. As a founder of Crank Ultimate, I can confidently say our program owes much of our success to the support and guidance Chris offered us as a new member of the Competitive Alliance. He has also helped bolster the reputation of Ottawa Ultimate across Canada as No Borders is one of the premier tournaments around, and is notorious for its amazing food (shout out to pickled eggs!). Chris has breathed life into this community as Stella's first full-time, non-playing coach in recent memory and a player who knew how to play hard and have fun - the man got a layout D in Parity League finals that sent the fans through the roof!
  OCUA will miss you so much, Chris, but we wish you all the best as you pursue new opportunities and a lot of beautiful mountaintops out west. Alberta teams have been known to make the trek to NoBo, so don't be a stranger!
   While we are very sorry to see him go, the OCUA Board of Directors would like to extend our sincere gratitude to Chris Castonguay for his exemplary work as OCUA’s Executive Director.  From his start in 2014 to now, his commitment to the success of the Ottawa-Carleton Ultimate Association has been unparalleled.  His hard work, dedication, and strategic and forward-thinking have positioned OCUA to be an example and leader in the Ultimate community, whether with youth and junior programming, gender equity initiatives, or providing leadership and guidance navigating us through the last 12 months – unquestionably our most challenging time as a league.  We have truly appreciated Chris’s passion and commitment to the sport, both personally and professionally, and we can’t thank him enough for everything he’s done for OCUA over his time as our Executive Director.  Best of the luck in all your future endeavours, and we hope to see you on the field soon!
  Thank you / Merci
DAVE BROWN: OCUA STAFF (2018 - present)
   In August of 2018, I was hired by Chris to run OCUA’s tournaments and events for the league. After nearly three years of working closely together, I know we’ve had an Executive Director who cared immensely about fairness across OCUA and about growing our league for the generation to come. Having been part of OCUA for over 30 years, it is truly no small feat to see our successes largely owed to his insights and experience. And while it is sad for me to see him move on to new endeavours, I’m happy that I’ve learned much under Chris and look forward to carrying his vision forward with the help of our amazing volunteers and players of all ages.
   I will always have great memories of working with Chris at OCUA. I very much enjoyed working with him - whether it was lining UPI’s parking lot, bbq’ing in the rain at O-Town Throwdown, coming up with ways to entice captains to make teams, or working out the schedule for No Borders. He has achieved so many great things for OCUA and I feel privileged to have been a part of his time there. Good luck with futures endeavours and you will be missed! Also, it turns out we have never taken a picture together. Likely my fault as I hate being in photos.
   Although it is true that All Good Things must come to an end, it is bittersweet to see the end for CC as our Executive Director.  It is the true hallmark of a leader that things "just seem to work" and that people are not even aware that someone put tremendous thought and effort into it. Christopher was exactly that type of leader, and we are all better for his efforts. CC always saw the bigger picture and the implications of choices, and was never afraid to take a calculated risk to try something new. 
   Personally, a chat with CC was always insightful and led me to learn something new, if even a way of looking at a problem that I hadn't considered before. I will miss him greatly and know that Alberta is lucky to have him.  Be safe, friend.
   I wanted to thank Chris for working so hard with me on reviving the womxn's scene. He has been amazing in making it as easy as possible to succeed. I am very grateful for the freedom to run the programs from a female perspective and adjust things on the fly as needed.