Sonia Denoncourt will be leaving FIFA in December, after nine years of leading the Women’s Refereeing. She will return to North America as the new Director of the CONCACAF Referee Department, position vacated by Brian Hall.
Denoncourt refereed the women's Olympic Final in Sydney, Australia, in 2000, between the United States and Norway. Sonia was also the first person to referee a game at the first ever Women’s Olympic Football Tournament. She started refereeing in 1978 and worked her way up until she reached the international level, spending 10 years (1994-2004) on the FIFA List. In the second Women's World Cup in Sweden, in 1995, she refereed three games and in 1996 another three games, including the opening game, quarter final and semi-final. Later, also in 1996, she became the first woman to referee a men’s first division game in El Salvador and in 1997 a men's first division game in Brazil. In 1999, she did the opening game of the Women's World Cup at Giants Stadium in New York. During the 2003 Women's World Cup, Sonia refereed the semi-final between Germany and the United States. In terms of international appearances she refereed over 100 games. Not being selected for the 2004 Olympic Games in Athens, she announced her retirement from refereeing in July 2004 and the following year was appointed as a FIFA referee instructor. Denoncourt started her work in administration in 2001, as the Director of Referee Development for the Canadian Soccer Association. Sonia held that position until 2005, when she became the Head of FIFA Women’s Refereeing.