GATINEAU, QUEBEC--(Marketwired - Aug. 12, 2016) - Department of Canadian Heritage

On behalf of the Government of Canada and all Canadians, I am proud to congratulate Penny Oleksiak of Toronto, Ontario, on winning Canada's first gold medal at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games. Penny's performance in the women's 100-metre freestyle swimming event earned her the top spot on the podium.

In her first Olympic Games, at only 16 years old, Penny has won Canada's first Olympic gold medal in swimming in 24 years and become the first Canadian to win four medals at a single Olympic Summer Games. She is the youngest Canadian gold medalist ever.

Canadians should be proud of the support they have provided to Penny and her teammates through the Government of Canada-the single largest investor in our country's sport system. The Government of Canada is proud to invest in our athletes in support of their day-in, day-out commitment to excellence whenever and wherever they compete.

The Rio 2016 Olympic Summer Games mark another chapter in Canada's rich sport history, and I know that Penny's gold-medal performance will be etched forever in the hearts and minds of 35 million Canadians - and her inspiring performance will be replayed by our country's young people in backyard and community pools from coast to coast to coast for many years to come. It is my hope that the accomplishments of Penny and the rest of the Canadian team will inspire #35Mstrong to celebrate the special contribution that sport makes to our national identity, especially as we approach the 150th anniversary of Confederation in 2017.

I once again congratulate Penny and wish the rest of Team Canada all the best as competition continues in Rio until August 21.

Associated Links

Swimming Canada

Canadian Olympic Committee

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Contact Information:

Ashley Michnowski
Press Secretary
Office of the Honourable Carla Qualtrough
Minister of Sport and Persons with Disabilities