||Trinidad & Tobago
||10 Mar 1979
in Plaisance, TTO|
Further Personal Information
||Humanities, Psychology - University of Maryland, Baltimore County: United States
Sport Specific Information
|When and where did you begin this sport?
||She took up athletics as a child in Trinidad and Tobago, and began to pursue the sport seriously when she went to university in the United States of America.
|Why this sport?
||Her father Raymond competed in throwing events at university, and introduced her and her sister Natasha to the sport. "I always felt that I was really strong, and I kind of had the feeling that [shot put] was the event for me."
|Club / Team
||Rebirth Athletic Club: Trinidad & Tobago
|Memorable sporting achievement
||Competing at her first Olympic Games in 2004 in Athens. (TTT Live Online YouTube channel, 06 Oct 2020)
||She had a finger injury at the 2015 World Championships in Beijing, People's Republic of China. (teamtto.org, 22 Aug 2015)
|Sporting philosophy / motto
||"The first step is to completely immerse yourself into your goal. The second step is to surround yourself with great people. The third step is to be true to your authentic self." (TEDx Talks YouTube channel, 20 Dec 2017)
|Awards and honours
||A street in La Horquetta, Trinidad and Tobago, was named after her in 2020. (Facebook page, 04 Jul 2020)
She was named the 2019 Most Outstanding Female Athlete by the National Association of Athletics Administrations of Trinidad & Tobago [NAAATT]. She also won the award in 2013 and 2014. (guardian.co.tt, 05 Jan 2015; teamtto.org, 06 Jan 2020)
She was named Sportswoman of the Year by the Trinidad and Tobago Olympic Committee [TTOC] in 2006, 2010, 2013, 2014 and 2015. (guardian.co.tt, 31 Dec 2015)
She was named Sportswoman of the Year at the First Citizens Sports Foundation Awards in Trinidad and Tobago in 2002, 2007, 2010, 2014 and 2015. (guardian.co.tt, 15 Mar 2016; sportarchivestt.com, 2015)
||In 2015 she became the first female representing Trinidad and Tobago to win a gold medal in any sport at the Pan American Games, when she was victorious in the shot put in Toronto, ON, Canada. (SportsDeskOnline, 01 Feb 2021; guardian.co.tt, 26 Apr 2016)
||Her late father Raymond Borel competed in shot put, javelin and discus at Queen's Royal College in Trinidad and Tobago. (wired868.com, 29 Jul 2016)
||To compete at the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo. (TTT Live Online YouTube channel, 06 Oct 2020)
She has indicated her plans to retire after the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo to pursue a career in sports administration. "At the start of the [COVID-19] pandemic, I was really disappointed at the prospect of the Games being postponed. But now, I'm excited to give my sport another shot. For sure I'll consider ending my career in Tokyo a happy ending. My dream for Tokyo is to go out there to do my best, and to just say goodbye to the world as an athlete, and hello to the world as a sport administrator and someone with a great impact on more athletes in the future." (TTT Live Online YouTube channel, 06 Oct 2020; trinidadexpress.com, 02 Dec 2020)
She studied at Coppin State University in Baltimore, MD, United States of America, before transferring to the University of Maryland, Baltimore County. She also obtained a master's degree in public health education and promotion at Virginia Tech in the United States of America. She has also pursued a master's degree in sport management at the University of West Indies in Jamaica. She has dual citizenship in Trinidad and Tobago and the United States of America. (guardian.co.tt, 25 Jun 2020; IAAF, 28 Feb 2004; LinkedIn profile_2, 01 Jan 2010; Instagram profile, 31 Jul 2020)
She has started her own foundation called the Cleopatra Borel Foundation, which aims to empower children through sport and education. The foundation organised its first Throws Meet event in Trinidad and Tobago in 2019. "I thought it was fabulous. We saw a very high turn out of females at the competition and that augurs well for the country going forward. We need to compete and competitions like this will only improve our athletes." (Cleopatra Borel Foundation Instagram page, 01 Jan 2021; trinidadexpress.com, 19 Jun 2020; guardian.co.tt. 25 Jun 2020)