PHPA Hosts Successful, Productive 50th Annual Meeting of Player Representatives

Author: Darryl Dionne, PHPA Director of Communications and Business Development
Date: Jun 21, 2017

The Professional Hockey Players’ Association (PHPA) recently hosted it’s 50th Annual Meeting of Player Representatives at the Hilton Orlando Bonnet Creek & Waldorf Astoria where over 200 attendees comprised of PHPA Player Representatives, Executive Committee Members, staff, Advisors, and special guests took part in the opportunity to review the past year, provide input and direction with respect to the Association’s strategic plan, while celebrating the launch of the PHPA’s 50th Anniversary celebrations.

During the meetings, one Player Representative from each American Hockey League (AHL) and ECHL team participate in open discussion on a variety of Collective Bargaining and other League and PHPA issues.

PHPA Executive Director, Larry Landon kicked-off the meetings by presenting a ‘Year in Review’ which looked at the many different aspects of the Association’s operations from May 1, 2016 to April 30, 2017 including a comprehensive look at the professional hockey landscape.

During an interactive forum, PHPA Hockey Operations staff, including Matt Salewski, Baron Bedesky, Jim Wiley, PHPA Legal Counsel Bob Riley, and PHPA General Counsel Ron Jaros examined select disputes and grievances that occurred throughout the year, including how each issue was resolved.

Darryl Dionne, Head of Business Operations for the PHPA provided players with an in-depth look into various marketing, sponsorship, and communications initiatives undertaken by the PHPA over the past year, including a thorough preview of how the Association will be celebrating it’s 50th Anniversary. 

Senior Advisor to the National Football League Players Association (NFLPA), Richard Berthelsen moderated a panel on the subject of workers’ compensation.  Included on the panel was PHPA Workers’ Compensation Attorneys Jim Aven, Ben Boscolo, and Bert Villarini, NFLPA Associate Counsel Ned Ehrlich, Duane Lewis from the Fairly Group, and former PHPA Member, Steve MacIntyre.  The panel helped educate all players about the workers compensation process for professional athletes and the importance of reporting and documenting injuries when they occur. 

AHL President and CEO, Dave Andrews as well as ECHL Commissioner Brian McKenna provided a “State of the League Address” on behalf of their respective leagues, followed by a closed-door meeting with players.

Other guest speakers and presentations during the week included:

  • “US Immigration for the Professional Hockey Player and Their Family” - Joe Kirkwood from Leibl and Kirkwood
  • “Tax Planning for the Professional Athlete” - Mark Paluczak from BDO International
  • "The PHPA Brand / Alumni Network” – Rob Striar, Principal, M Style Marketing
  • Meridian and the new PHPA affinity card” – Wade Stayzer, Vice President, Sales and Service
  • “Career Enhancement Program"Larry Downes, Program Coordinator
  •  “Master of Education in Athletic Administration Program” – Anthony D’Onofrio, Endicott College
  • Athabasca University – Michael Shouldice, Senior Recruitment Officer
  • “Ready to See Yourself on a New Playing Field” – Perry Badham, Jamie Roche, Deron Cousens, and Darrin Shannon from Sun Life Financial  

Throughout the week, the PHPA also paid homage to it’s past by selecting 5 former players who were heavily involved with the PHPA during their playing career to serve as Era Representatives, which included:

  • Glenn Patrick (1967 – 1977)
  • Claude Noel (1977 – 1987)
  • Paul Jerrard (1987 – 1997)
  • Dane Jackson (1997 – 2007)
  • Peter Vandermeer (2007 – 2017)

Each Era Representative addressed the Player Representatives, recounting their experiences and involvement with the PHPA during their tenure.

All attendees were invited to take part in the annual BFL CANADA Risk and Insurance Services, Inc. Golf Tournament at the beautiful Waldorf Astoria Golf Course.

The week was capped off with a closing banquet which served as the official launch of the PHPA’s 50th Anniversary.  Throughout the evening, the PHPA presented the 2017 PHPA Curt Leichner Distinguished Member Award to Brad Treliving, unveiled a custom designed Harley Davidson motorcycle that will be raffled at the conclusion of the PHPA 50th Anniversary season, and played a 50th Anniversary video which featured testimonials about the PHPA from various members of the hockey community.  The celebrations were followed by an unforgettable performance from world renowned hypnotist Danny Zzzz!

The PHPA sincerely appreciates the contributions of presenting sponsors BFL CANADA Risk & Insurance Services Inc., Meridian, Meritain Health, IOA, Lifeworks, Programmed Insurance Brokers (PIB), Endicott College, BDO International, and SunLife Financial for allowing the PHPA to host a professional and informative meeting for all players and their families.


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