PORT HAWKESBURY: A new era of Junior B Hockey has begun in the Strait area.
For the first time in its 53-year history, the Junior Pirates team is owned by the community. The initiative to restructure the organization was finalized by members at an annual meeting on March 27.
Newly-minted President Adam Rodgers says it’s an exciting time to be involved.
“The energy around the club and the organization in general is tremendous and the fact you can be a voting member and owner for $100 is very enticing,” he said. “We’re pleased with the early positive response from the community.”
Rodgers will be joined on the executive by Joan Burke as Vice President, Kelly McIntyre-Hayes in the role of Treasurer, and Lance Hawley is the new Secretary.
Other board members include Shaun MacDonald, Cody MacKeigan, Jennifer MacDonnell, Cameron MacEachern, and Bob MacDonald.
Rodgers has appealed to the community for support.
“This is all about putting a winning team on the ice,” he said. “The more support we receive the better chance we have of having success in the rink.”
As part of the annual meeting, directors appointed a general manager who has been a familiar face around the Pirate dressing room over the years. Tim MacMillan will take over on-ice operations immediately; he is a former GM and coach with the club.
He’ll be joined by assistants Brian Tracey and Brad Raike, both well known in hockey circles including their history with the Strait Pirates.
“The Strait Pirates have always had a solid reputation in hockey circles and I firmly believe that with the group of people now working under our new president, we can change the culture and get back to winning games,” he said.
MacMillan adds his first task is hiring a coach which could happen within weeks.
The focus of the organization in the coming months will be signing up members as well as fund-raising for the upcoming season.