TRIBUTES TO DEEDEE CORRADINI
"Please accept my heartfelt sympathy. I had the opportunity to hear DeeDee speak a couple of times and I was impressed by her courage to carry the torch for the Women Ski Jumpers. She spoke about her role getting the Olympics to Salt Lake. She was nothing short of dynamite. I was inspired by her. I am so sorry we lost just a great lady and leader. With sincere condolences."
- Barbara Blase, Cornerstone Communities
"As a reporter covering the struggle to get women's ski jumping in the Olympics, I had several opportunities to meet with Deedee. Each time, I came away impressed that this political giant would lend her expertise and enthusiasm to this effort with such passion and dedication. She was exactly what the WSJ movement needed--someone with the political savvy to navigate the complexities of the IOC and the reason and research to deliver an iron-clad argument in favor of what she knew was right."
- Beau Dure, SportsMyriad
"I am so deeply saddened by this news. Deedee was a dear friend, mentor, and inspiration. Her legacy lives on in the women she inspired! God Bless you, Deedee, and thank you for your friendship and for believing in my work. Across time and beyond boundaries."
- Julie Willis
"It is with great sadness that we share in the loss today of my dear friend and former Mayor Deedee Corradini. Deedee and I became close after her two terms as Salt Lake City Mayor as she was working to make women's ski jumping an official Olympic sport. We became sponsors of her annual fundraiser on behalf of these young women. I'm thrilled that she was able to see the women perform in their first Olympics in Sochi. She and I shared a passion for the Olympics and with her help, we were able to meet political figures in Moscow and connect with officials of the USOC through Deedee efforts and support of the US Welcome Pavilion. She and I had lunch this last June, just before being diagnosed with non-smoker lung cancer. Through Deedee efforts, I was approved for membership in the Women's International Forum, of which she was the former international president. Deedee's reach was beyond the City of Salt Lake City and of our State. Internationally, Deedee was highly respected and admired for her courage and her relentless drive in support of women and human rights around the globe. Today we lost one of the best. I am forever grateful she touched my life."
- Maxine Turner, Cuisine Unlimited, Inc.
"Our entire team at Visa is devastated by the news of Deedee’s passing. Deedee was more than the heart and soul throughout the evolution of the sport of Women’s Ski Jumping; she was an incredible advocate for women everywhere. The relentless essence of Deedee’s legacy is an incredible spirit to celebrate and emulate. Our deepest condolences from all of us at Visa who had the pleasure of working with Deedee over the last ten years."
- Kate Johnson, Kara Linse, and the entire team at Visa
"I am so deeply saddened by this news. My heart aches actually. I know full and well that Deedee Corradini was the machine behind getting Women's Ski Jumping into the Olympics. They got their debut in 2014 after a decade+ battle, which included a lawsuit against the Vancouver Organizing Committee (VANOC) that went to the Canadian Supreme Court.15 athletes from around the world, led by 2009 World Champion Lindsey Van and backed by Corridini/Women's Ski Jumping USA, pushed the system to a breaking point with superior skills on and off the ski slope, massive public support and a extraordinary media campaign.
I watched from afar--and in awe. And I was more infuriated at the injustice of women's continue exclusion from and lack of equality within Olympic Sports across the spectrum, in clear violation of the Olympic Charter and human rights laws.In 2011, through the help of a good friend and Women's Canoe Mom, we got in contact with Ms. Corridini. I am forever grateful and indebted for the time they took over the last few years to talk with me regarding our battle for inclusion of and equality for Women's Canoe in the Summer Olympics. Ms. Corridini always responded to my emails and always took a phone call. I know she was very busy. She was always patient, always encouraging, even when I did not know what to do and I was frustrated.
We need more Women Warriors like her in this world. We need more humans like her. Dignified. Powerful. Grace and strength under pressure. An indefatigable defender of human rights. The Giver of Wings.
The story for Women Canoeists' continued exclusion from the Olympic Games is the same story. Canoe/Kayak has been on the Olympic program since the 1924 but there are only events for female kayakers--no women's canoe events. 11 out of the 16 canoe/kayak events are for men only. Women ski jumpers finally won their battle for inclusion as they debuted at the 2014 Winter Olympics, but we know the battle for equal events as the men continues. The next chance for Women's Canoe inclusion is 2020. Thank you, Deedee, for your inspiration to continue this fight, no matter the cost. R.I.P."
- Pam Boteler, President, WomenCAN International - A Global Voice for Equality in Olympic Canoeing
"We can't choose how or when we enter this world and we cannot always choose how we exit or why, but we can choose how we live while we are here. Deedee, you chose well and did great things with love, respect, dignity, humanity, humility, and what was right. Deedee, the eagles will love your company in all the skys of the world. May you have a joyous journey. Those of us here will "try" to continue your legacy. We "mostly" know what should be done and we will give it our "best shot" -- with your continued guidance. I will miss you. Tons of love and respect."
- Robbie Beck
"An amazing beacon of light, an inspiration to women world wide, and a personal hero and friend, Deedee is a true champion for the ages."
- Ann MacQuoid, Senior Partner, Associate Broker, Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Utah Properties
"My sincerest condolences to family and friends. Deedee's warm welcoming smile was contagious. Please keep your bright light shining on us."
- Margaret M. 'Maggie' Skloss
"I was very sorry to hear of Deedee’s passing. I first made her acquaintance in February 2010 during the Whistler Games when she was campaigning tirelessly on behalf of the women ski jumpers and we communicated regularly over the years until we met again in Sochi. I am very glad she lived long enough to see Sarah, Lindsey, and Jessica take part in the 2014 Winter Games, a historical breakthrough that she played a large role in making happen."
- David Ljunggren, National Political Correspondent, Canada
"Deedee was a strong, intelligent, caring, and beautiful person. She will be missed."
- Leanne Fuller, Greenville, South Carolina
"I first met Deedee and became aware of the issue confronting the Women's Ski Jumpers at a Far West Ski Association convention a few years ago. I was impressed then with their perseverance and her guidance in the effort to get the ladies Olympic recognition. When the NSCF selected the Westgate Resort in Park City for our annual meeting in 2014, Deedee was an obvious choice to be our keynote speaker. She was a beacon for the WSJ and will continue to be a guiding angel for them. While we were unaware of her illness, we greatly appreciate that she wholeheartedly agreed to speak to our delegates. A great lady will be missed. On behalf of the National Ski Council Federation, our heartfelt condolences go out to her family and friends, including the women of WSJ and the Fly Girls. May she rest in peace. We have lost a beacon of light."
- Joe Harvis, President, 2009-2015, National Ski Council Federation
"What a loss for Salt Lake City, and for women’s ski jumping. Ms. Corradini was a pioneer for women in general, and for the sport of women’s ski jumping specifically. She was courageous in her efforts to get equality for women and was a great representative for Salt Lake City as well. She will be missed."
- Suzy Hanney, Publisher, Park City Magazine
"My thoughts are with you all. She was an amazing woman."
- Ann Gaffigan, Co-Founder & CTO
"You were (you are still) a light in the darkness for us (coaches and girls)!"
- Sten Baloh, Slovenian Women Head coach
"I was shocked and saddened to read your email this morning about Deedee Corradini’s death from cancer yesterday. I have known and admired Deedee for many years. She accomplished so much in all of the positions she held. I knew her best when she was Mayor of Salt Lake City. I was Commissioner of Higher Education and CEO to the State Board of Regents at the time. Olene Walker was Lt. Governor, and Jan Graham was Attorney General. Never before had women held these positions at the same time...and they probably never will again. Deedee inspired all those with whom she came in contact. Her fight for equity for women in ski jumping at the local, national, and international levels was amazing.We all will miss her greatly."
- Cecelia (Cece) H. Foxley, Ph.D., Former Utah Commissioner of Higher Education
"We wanted to send our deepest condolences to Deedee’s family and the women’s ski jumping community on the passing of Deedee Corradini, a great advocate for equality in sports and a great friend of both SportsTravel magazine and the TEAMS Conference. Deedee was very gracious with her time at our TEAMS ’13 off-site session in Park City, sharing with our attendees the struggles and perseverance of the athletes at Women’s Ski Jumping USA. She will be deeply missed. We posted an item on our website this morning and through our social media channels to let people know. We are deeply saddened to hear of her loss."
- Jason Gewirtz, Editor, Schneider Publishing Company, Inc.
"We write on behalf of the entire team at Davis LLP (DLA Piper (Canada) LLP) to express our condolences. We had the pleasure of working with Deedee and the WSJ-USA Board on the applications to our courts seeking to have Women’s Ski Jumping included as part of the program for the 2010 Olympics. It was a hard-fought legal and public relations battle. Our firm, together with Deborah Folka (our public relations consultant), WSJ-USA, and the individual jumpers, who courageously agreed to act as plaintiffs, all made significant contributions, but Deedee was the leader and its champion. We were not successful in the Canadian courts, but the movement was very successful in the court of public opinion. Deedee was there throughout and witnessed her women jump at Sochi in 2014. Deedee was an outstanding leader. She was a pleasure to work with, always supportive and always available. She fully understood the fundamental importance and inherent strength of the underlying principle of “equality” and pursued it with determination. In a case such as this, it can be very difficult for a party to remain principled, focused and not get drawn into the fray. There were intimidating threats. For example: if this case proceeded, the women would never be permitted to jump at the Olympics. Deedee ignored the threats and their implications. She remained focused on correcting the injustice, without stooping to address threats or slurs. She stayed on the ‘high road’. She never derided her opponent and was an example to all of us. We will deeply miss her but we will not forget her legacy."
- D. Ross Clark Q.C., Monica Gehlen, Jeffrey Horswill, Morgan Burris
"Thank you, DeeDee, for your giant contributions to worldwide Women’s ski jumping. We will miss you. Rest in Peace."
- Phil Brown
"Deedee was one terrific lady and a great partner to Visa. On behalf of our Visa team, please receive our most heartfelt condolences on the passing of an amazing woman. Her legacy is long and wide. We feel incredibly proud of the opportunity to help disseminate her work with WSJ. In fact, my favorite Visa Sochi commercial was the Emilia Earhart spot where we featured the first sky jumping woman “flying.” Now in my head, that spot will be remembered as the Emilia and Deedee spot."
- Antonio Lucio, CMO, Visa
"I grew up in Utah and was very much a beneficiary of Deedee’s proud legacy as a Mayor. I remember riding the Utah Trax for the first time and experiencing a sense of pride for Salt Lake. Later, I had the opportunity to work alongside Deedee in real estate. She carried herself with uprightness and great dignity, and always managed to convey a sense of her tremendous humanity and sense of principle. What a well-lived and honorable life Deedee lived. I take her life as a model for how to live mine. May she live on through her admirable legacy and the continuation of the battles she waged still to be won."
- Annie Agle, Manager, Digital Marketing, Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Utah Properties
"I'm extremely saddened to hear of Deedee's passing. I had a chance to meet Deedee very briefly at Doha GOALS--she had a positivity about her that was contagious and was glowingly proud of the progress women in sport were making (though she'd never say it, much due to her tenacity and commitment). She was most excited for the potential of the US to host another Olympic Games in the near future. For women in sport like myself, Deedee's wings spread far and wide, and will continue to soar amongst the clouds of possibility. Thank you, Deedee--I'm forever inspired by you."
- Katrina Galas, Toronto, ON, Canada
"Being Deedee's neighbor and friend was a privilege and honor. We knew when we moved in we were living next to a very well known figure in our area but had no clue that we would enjoy John and Deedee as dear and close friends. When we needed a neighbor favor, we would call each other. We enjoyed so many evenings on their deck sipping wine and eating appetizers. I went through a lot of mixed nuts from Costco.... she always had them! John loved his gorgeous flowers and bird feeders so it was a joy to just BE. I loved meeting her devoted daughter Andrea and family and learned first-hand how Deedee's cancer journey impacted others- even strangers in the waiting room who were gifted sneakers through Andrea and Nike. Andrea had taught Deedee Tabata (or however you spell it) so this almost 70 year old taught me and whipped my butt!
Deedee took my sister and me as her and John's guests to a women's ski jumping event at the Montage and we loved it. We loved the food, the ambiance, and hearing the girls' stories. We took postcards for our young niece who is an athlete and the connection made watching the Olympics truly golden. Deedee shared with us very early on about her diagnosis. We were in shock. However we knew if anyone could rally the strength and courage to do what it took to fight, it would be her. We tried to help as best we could when in Utah and our last time there we enjoyed some time together with John and Andrea at her side. Their devotion has been extraordinary. I am sure others have been no different but they are the ones we know best. We met extraordinary people through Deedee but no one more so than herself. Her life was and is a blessing and we were blessed to be a part even if far too short a time."
- Nancy and Will Greenberg
"I am so deeply saddened by this news. Deedee was a dear friend, mentor and inspiration. Her legacy lives on in the women she inspired! God Bless you Deedee and thank you for your Friendship and for believing in my work. Across time and beyond boundaries."
- Julie Willis
"I was saddened to hear of the loss of Deedee. I have lived in Utah since 1979 and saw the change in Utah in terms of women's rights and the place of women in politics and sport. I was a feminist from New York and lived through the fight for women's sports with Title IX. I came to admire Deedee for her journey in both of these movements and saw her as a maverick and leader for women in Utah. I admired her for jumping into male politics in Utah and being such a strong leader in her position as mayor. She was instrumental in helping bring the Olympics to Utah and I am glad I was able to thank her in person as I saw her in my hometown of Park City. I cheered her on as she fought to get women's ski jumping in the Olympics. She fought tirelessly and she won a great victory watching the women compete in Sochi. She will be greatly missed. Condolences to her family who feel her loss much greater than those of us who admired from afar."
- Karen W. Malm, Ph.D., Licensed Psychologist, Executive Director, Summit Community Counseling
“I am so saddened to hear of DeeDee’s passing. She was fierce, passionate and a true leader in her efforts for WSJ. I am honored to have known her. She gave so much of herself to all she did and she will be remembered fondly by so many. I was blessed to have known her. She will be truly and deeply missed, but her legacy lives on. My deepest condolences to her family.”
- Anna Wilson
"Deedee Corradini was a visionary leader. She saw a world where women and men respected one another and she worked to make that vision a reality. Just one year ago, the Olympic Winter Games hosted the first event for women in the discipline of Ski Jumping as a result of her leadership. She was a great woman and a dear friend to all who cared about fairness and opportunity. I will miss her."
- Anita DeFrantz, IOC Executive Board Member
"There is no one like her, and probably never will be. The personal time we spent together during Ready To Fly was incredibly powerful. Somehow Deedee planted a bit of her spirit in me.I liked her from the start, and her spirit of compassion and vision will live on with me (and so many others) for a long time. May she rest in peace."
- Peter Pilafian, Director of Photography, Ready To Fly
"Here was a person whose legacy will shine for a long time to come, especially every time another gal leaves the takeoff and lands. Deedee will forever be affectionately remembered in reverence, in gratitude, and in joy. The girls of this world, and of ski jumping in particular, have been blessed by Deedee's charm, dedication, and immense leadership. Through the struggles and low times, there rests now the high times of Olympic inclusion! In Falun, at the recent World Championships, we saw a never-before mixed team competition! Sarah's 98.5 m hop was more than just a personal joy ride. I would like to think that Sarah's flight had a special, personal "thanks" addressed in it--for Deedee. Nice going, Girl!
What a positive effect this woman had, has and will have for the human spirit. With her tenacious spirit and special talents, she championed a cause that has made our sport richer, and more enduring. She and her committee of tireless workers sharing a common vision, can be very proud. Thank you!
The U.S. Masters Ski-Jumping membership across the country, and throughout the world, certainly join me in congratulating the Corradini Family, and in sharing the loss of this great gal, and in celebrating her life. Deedee Corradini's signature will continue to provide lift to a sport that can always use it. So. like my Dad shared with brother Corky and me as he taught us how to ski-jump in the 50's...Pa Pete would tell us that his jumping peers in the 30's had a special saying right before leaving the top of the jump: "Long and Pretty!" From this Life into Heaven, Deedee! Make it...L-o-n-g and P-r-e-t-t-y! Is there any other way she would have done it?"
- Tim Denisson, Chairman, U.S.Masters Ski-Jumping/member IMC Executive Committee
"I’ve been with Deedee from Day 1 when I introduced her to Lindsey Van, my niece. It was a few months after the Olympics. I told Deedee that Lindsey wants to go to the Olympics, but the International Olympic Committee won’t allow women to jump next to the men in the games. Deedee’s look was almost like she was stunned. “I didn’t know that.” We were able to get 2 other sports in 2002. “If I would have only known,” she said. Well, once she became involved everything finally changed for the good. You could not say no to Deedee. She was so passionate, so dedicated, and so right! We miss her zest and compassion so much. There is a definite void in the universe that the women ski jumpers are filling with their aspirations to be the best. Like Deedee."
- George E. Van Jr.
"I had the privilege of working closely with Deedee in the fight to get women's ski jumping into the Olympics. Alongside the clever lawyers of Davis LLP, the brave athletes and their supportive families, I was responsible for the strategic communications campaign we waged in the court of public opinion. It was years, many disappointments, and an enormous amount of work until we had the satisfaction of seeing the women jump in the 2014 Games. Deedee was our spokesperson and she was, simply, the best. Always on-point, always clear, always polite, and always positive, she conveyed our message about the inequality of the situation in every forum possible. She facilitated meetings, gave speeches, spoke with media, gave interviews, advised, strategized, and provided unflagging leadership.
Deedee was a frequent guest in our home when she came to Vancouver during the court battle with VANOC. Together we rode the Skytrain downtown to the courthouse, giving us lots of time to talk and exchange life histories. One day, I was seething about something idiotic that had been said about the ski jumpers and while Deedee agreed, she was unruffled. I asked her, "Deedee, don't you ever get mad?" She took a moment and replied thoughtfully, "No. I learned long ago that getting angry is just a waste of time. It's better to put the energy into setting things right." At the end of one particularly long and frustrating day in court, Deedee said, "I could use a glass of wine." I took her to the lounge of the elegant Wedgwood Hotel. She sat back on the plush velvet banquette, sighed and said, "Now, this is my kind of place." It became the location our group returned to time and again to talk things over, to meet with media, and on that final day, when we lost in the Court of Appeal to spend time comforting and encouraging each other. We referred to it as "Deedee's office."
I find it hard to believe someone so energetic, so indestructible, and so strong is no longer with us. But her legacy is enormous, her memory will always be a blessing, and I'm so glad I had a chance to know her. With heartfelt condolences to John and the rest of Deedee's family."
- Deborah Folka, APR, DLF Communications Limited
Bud Greenspan and I were touched by Deedee's passion for life--whether it was for us to make a film to promote women's ski jumping inclusion in the Olympic program or her request to review our films of past Closing Ceremonies Olympic flag pass-offs so when she received the flag in Nagano in 1998, it would do honor to our country...and she did.
- Cappy Office
We at the EY Women Athletes Business Network are deeply saddened by the death of Deedee Corradini, a powerful advocate for women in sport and leadership. A former president and global ambassador for the International Women’s Forum (IWF), she helped bring to life the mentoring program for the EY Women Athletes Business Network. Throughout her career, Deedee pushed for progress on women’s leadership issues. She was a no-nonsense individual who knew how to get things done. An astute politician as mayor of Salt Lake City, she led the winning campaign to host the 2002 Winter Olympic Games. Subsequently, she led the charge to bring women’s ski jumping to the Winter Games, and was in Sochi, Russia to witness the inaugural event. We are honored to have a role to play now in her legacy with our mentoring program. Over the coming years, we will work even harder, in partnership with IWF, to pay tribute to her by building out this program and making it a successful bridge between female athletes and top female leaders.
- Beth Brooke-Marciniak, Global Vice Chair, Public Policy, EY and Donna de Varona, Olympic Champion and Lead Advisor, EY Women Athletes Business Network