SPRINGFIELD, Mass. … The American Hockey League’s Board of Governors is pleased to announce that league president and chief executive officer David Andrews has agreed to terms on a new five-year contract that will see him continue to lead the AHL through the 2012-13 season.
Andrews assumed the AHL presidency in 1994 and has solidified himself as one of the sport’s most influential executives. He has guided the league into unequaled times of prosperity, directing the AHL to record levels of attendance and exposure while significantly expanding its geography across the United States and Canada.
“Over the 72-year history of the American Hockey League, the Board of Governors has made a lot of sound decisions in the best interests of the game of hockey,” said Jim Schoenfeld, member of the AHL’s executive committee and assistant general manager of the NHL’s New York Rangers. “Extending Dave Andrews’ contract is one of the best moves the Board could make. We are thrilled to have his leadership and guidance at the helm moving forward.”
Under Andrews’ direction, the AHL has become the sole primary development league for all 30 National Hockey League teams. In 2001, he led one of the largest expansion efforts ever in professional sports, a complex enterprise of bringing nine new cities into the AHL, including six from the former International Hockey League. The AHL’s footprint has grown dramatically during Andrews’ tenure, moving from a circuit of teams primarily on the Atlantic seaboard to one with successful franchises throughout the Northeast and Midwest, in major North American cities such as Chicago, Philadelphia, Toronto, Winnipeg, Cleveland, Houston, San Antonio and Milwaukee. Andrews has also worked to ensure the league’s success in smaller historical and traditional markets like Rochester, Springfield, Portland, Providence and Binghamton.
The annual AHL All-Star Classic and Calder Cup Playoffs have become marquee events for the American Hockey League, and both have reached international television audiences in recent years. The AHL also boasts an impressive list of corporate partners who have used the growing league as an effective tool for marketing their products and services. In 2004, Andrews oversaw a historic multi-million-dollar, multi-year partnership with Reebok, which has become the foundation for the AHL’s marketing, licensing and on-ice branding strategies.
A native of Nova Scotia, Andrews came to the league office with a firsthand knowledge of the AHL, having served as the general manager of the Edmonton Oilers’ AHL affiliate for seven years and winning a Calder Cup in 1993. His extensive hockey background includes serving as head coach of the WHL’s Victoria Cougars, serving on the development council of the Canadian Amateur Hockey Association and working with SportCanada in preparation for the 1988 Olympic Games in Calgary. Andrews was honored with induction into the British Columbia Hockey Hall of Fame in 2005, and the Nova Scotia Sport Hall of Fame in 2006.