Soetaert named Knights president

Former American Hockey League goaltender Doug Soetaert has been named the president of the Omaha Ak-Sar-Ben Knights and assistant general manager of the Calgary Flames, it was announced today by Flames GM and head coach Darryl Sutter.

Soetaert, 49, played six seasons in the AHL with the Providence Reds and New Haven Knighthawks, compiling a record of 52-48-13 and leading New Haven to the Calder Cup Finals in 1978.

“Doug brings a wealth of experience to our organization including team management and leadership,” said Sutter. “He has an in-depth understanding of the relationship between business operations and successful hockey administration. Doug has won both as a player and an executive at the professional level and we look forward to his contribution to our organization.”

As president of the Knights, who will begin play in the AHL in 2005-06, Soetaert will be responsible for guiding the organization to the achievement of corporate objectives and establishing the franchise as a dynamic and productive member of the Omaha community. He will be charged with the development and execution of the marketing, ticketing, community relations and communications plans and the promotion of hockey at the grassroots level in Omaha.

As assistant GM for the Flames, Soetaert will oversee the day-to-day hockey operations of the AHL franchise including player development, scouting, AHL reporting, scheduling and related administration.

“This is a very exciting day for me and my family, joining the Calgary Flames organization and returning to the midwest,” said Soetaert. “I look forward to working with Darryl and the entire organization on maintaining the high standards set both on the ice and in the community.”

Soetaert joins the Flames organization from the Everett Silvertips of the Western Hockey League, where for the past two seasons he has held the position of vice president and general manager.

Prior to his role with the Silvertips, Soetaert spent 11 seasons at the helm of the Kansas City Blades of the International Hockey League, serving as head coach and director of hockey operations before assuming the new positions of vice president and general manager. The Blades captured the 1991-92 Turner Cup championship, and Soetaert was named the league’s executive of the year.

An Edmonton native, Soetaert played parts of 12 seasons in the NHL, and was a member of the Montreal Canadiens’ 1986 Stanley Cup championship team.