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John Salmela

On October 29, 2014, John Salmela passed away at his home in Minas Gerais (Brazil) at the age of 69. John previously served on the AASP Executive Board and was an AASP Fellow (inducted in 1998). A native of Verdun, Quebec, Dr. Salmela obtained a Master's Degree from the University of Western Ontario and earned his Ph.D. in human performance (sport psychology) at the University of Alberta.  John subsequently pursued a 34-year teaching and research career that included positions at Universite Laval, Universite de Montreal, and the University of Ottawa, where he taught motor development and sport psychology courses in both English and French. His research interests spanned topics such as career development, mental skills assessment, talent identification, as well as the development of expert performance of coaches and athletes and the role of families in this process.

In the early 1980s, Dr. Salmela wrote The World Sport Psychology Sourcebook, which helped to define the field and has been updated with two subsequent editions. He authored the three level sport psychology curriculum for the International Gymnastics Federation. Additionally, John was Co-Editor of the International Journal of Sport Psychology (1987-1995), the sport psychology consultant for the Canadian Men's National Gymnastics Team from 1985-1995, and served for 16 years on the Managing Council of the International Society of Sport Psychology (ISSP). While we have benefited from his work in our field, more importantly we valued his mentorship and friendship, and extend our condolences to his family.

Written by Natalie Durand-Bush, Jean Cote, and Gordon Bloom