Jim's life away from his Law Office is unique. He sang Second Tenor in the world-famous Vancouver Bach Choir for 18 years and is a member of The Vancouver Club in downtown Vancouver and the Institute of Directors in London, England. Since 1980, he has been a perennial Master of Ceremonies at the free open-air summer dances at the Robson Square Ice Rink in downtown Vancouver.
But in his spare time, he is principally involved in all aspects of “DanceSport,” which received full recognition as a sport from the International Olympic Committee in 1997. (Think waltz, tango, salsa, breakdance, and you’ll get the idea!)
After retiring from competing on the dance floor, he was Canadian National President of the 1,300-member Canada DanceSport, the peak governing body for DanceSport in Canada, from 1997-2005. Jim was Canada's representative in the governing world body, the World DanceSport Federation (WDSF), and attended meetings all over North America, Asia and Europe, including at IOC Headquarters in Switzerland, and especially in cities across Canada from Victoria to Halifax. CBC-TV invited him to the 1996 Olympic Games in Atlanta for the filming of CBC-TV’s documentary on DanceSport's Olympic initiative and he appeared in the resulting episode of “CBC Witness” called “The Dancing Game.”
Competitions Through the Years
Jim was a successful competitor from 1976-86. In 1996 and 1997, he organized two very successful world-ranked DanceSport competitions in Vancouver, the “SnowBall Classic” WDSF World Competitions, featuring world-level competitors from Europe, Canada, the USA, and Asia. By “moving the SnowBall Classic to the next level,” he was pivotal in its huge growth and success ever since. Since 1985, he has presided over numerous Canadian DanceSport Championships in Calgary, Edmonton, Halifax, Montreal, Toronto, Vancouver, and has emceed three United States National Championships in Seattle and Baltimore. He has contributed to several publications, including the International DanceSport Magazine, Dance News, and The New York Times on the subject. He served as an Official of the 2001 World Games in Akita, Japan.
In 1998, he became the first Canadian ever elected to the governing WDSF ‘Presidium’, the sport’s 13-member world board of directors, and is one of the people in the world responsible for World Championships, DanceSport’s relations with the IOC, and other matters affecting the world's 5½ million registered DanceSport athletes.
He has been Chair of WDSF’s Legal Commission since 1998, dealing with sports law questions all over the world. He was re-elected to further terms on the Presidium in 2001, 2004, 2007, 2010, 2013 and 2017 and was WDSF’s first World Anti-Doping Representative.
WDSF's New World Board of Directors, Singapore,
June 2017 (Jim Fraser, Centre)
In 2016, Jim was elected 1st Vice President of WDSF. At the WDSF’s Diamond Anniversary 60th Annual General Meeting in Singapore in June 2017, he was elected to a four-year term as WDSF’s first Vice-President for Legal Affairs. He is still in that position today.
Jim has been involved with the Canadian Olympic Committee since 1997. He was DanceSport’s Representative to the Canadian Olympic Committee (COC) 1997 - 2005, and has served on two subcommittees of the COC. Since 2005 he has been elected and re-elected four times to personal membership or representation in the COC for British Columbia.
Awards Won by Jim Fraser
Sport, sport, sport! In 2001 Jim received the International Olympic Committee's Award for Meritorious Service to Sport.
In 2009, as former President of his national sport federation, Jim received the annual “President’s Award” for exceptional service to Sport in B.C.
In 2013 Jim received the Governor-General of Canada's Caring Canadian Award for long service to non-profit organizations.
In 2016 he was awarded The Sovereign’s Medal for Volunteers by the Governor-General of Canada.
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