Frances is being inducted in the Builder Category, but as with most builders in the sport of Volleyball, she was also a player for most of the same period of time.
Frances started playing volleyball in 1962-63 as a student at Bishops College. She then enrolled in the Physical Education Degree program at Memorial University of Newfoundland and played Senior Varsity Volleyball from 1965 to 1968. In 1968-69 she played with the St John’s Grads, who were the Provincial Runners-up that year. The next year, 1969-70, her St John’s Grads team was Provincial Champions.
For the next three years, 1970-71 to 1972-73, Frances was a member of the Guards Volleyball Team, who were Provincial Senior Ladies Champions in 1970-71 and Runners-up in 71-72. In 1972, her daughter, Heather was born and Frances took on the role of Team Manager.
The next year, 1973-74, Frances became a founding member of the St. John’s Recreational Volleyball League for Women and played for a team called “No-Names” who were Champions of the new league in 1973-74 and 74-75. She took the next year off from playing when her son Scott was born but returned to play from 1976-1990. In that time she played for, managed and some years coached the Sports Shop Team, which won League Championships in 1978 and 1980 and were Provincial “B” Champions in 1979-80.
Frances attended a number of National Competitions as a representative of Provincial Teams. In 1968, as a member of the MUN Team, she traveled to Montreal for the Eastern Canadian Junior Championships and the Team placed fourth. The next year, 1969, The Canadian Senior Championships were held in Fredericton, New Brunswick and Frances attended as a member of the St. John’s Grads Team. 1970 was the year she competed in the Canadian Championships in Winnipeg, Manitoba, again with her St. John’s Grads Team and for the fourth year in a row, in 1971, Frances played in the Canadian Championships. This time the event was held in Quebec City and she was a member of the Guards Volleyball Team.
Although Frances made many contributions as a Player, it was as a Builder that she has left a lasting mark on Women’s Volleyball in the Province. In 1968 she became the Physical Education teacher at Bishops College in St. John’s where she had been a student. From 1968 to 71 she coached both the Junior and Senior Girls Volleyball teams and won two junior Championships. In 1971-72 she moved to Bishop Abraham Junior High and coached the teams there.
In 1973, Frances was a founding member of the Executive, which saw a need for a new League for Women’s Volleyball in St. John’s. This league was the forerunner of the Women’s League, which is still very active today. It started at MacDonald Drive Junior High and in 1975 moved to the “Trades College”, now known as The College of the North Atlantic. By the early 1980’s the number of teams had grown to the point where a bigger venue was needed and the League moved to Holy Heart of Mary. Eventually there were three divisions of play in the League. Frances was the driving force behind that league! Not only was she the treasurer, but she also took on the responsible of drawing up the schedule for the League for many years (no one else would attempt it). She was the representative for Sports Shop on the League Executive for 15 years, from 1976 to 1990 and was Manager of that team for the same period. From 1984-1990 she was also playing coach of the Sports Shop Team.
Frances has always been involved in her community in many ways. She was a member of the Women’s Athletic Committee while a student at MUN and was awarded membership in The Athletic Honours Society in 1967. She represented Newfoundland as a player on the 1967 Basketball Team at the First Canada Winter Games in Quebec City. When Newfoundland was named as host of the 1980 National CAHPER Conference, she became part of the organizing committee. She was co-chair of the 30th Anniversary Celebrations Committee for the School of Physical Education at MUN in 1992-94. Frances worked for 20 years on the executive of the Mint Brook Anglican Girls Camp Committee and has volunteered at The Fluvarium since 1990. Frances has been a volunteer at the Newfoundland Sports Archives, two mornings a week, since 1995.