For the first time in league history, the BCHL plans to honour referees and linesmen for their contributions to the game.
BCHL alumni and current National Hockey League officials Kelly Sutherland and Brad Lazarowich have had awards created in their name for the top referee and linesman respectively.
The initiative is spearheaded by Derek Adams, the BCHL’s director of officiating.
“The awards were created to bring some recognition to our on-ice officials who strive to be the best they can be both on and off the ice,” Adams said. “Kelly and Brad got their start in officiating in the BCHL and have gone on to set a very high standard for officials both on and off the ice, but also in giving back to the development of officiating in British Columbia.”
The two award winners will each receive $500, of which $250 will be donated to a charity of choice in the name of the official.
The winners will be chosen at the end of the season and the selection process will involve input from Adams, BC Hockey Supervisors and the BCHL board of governors.
“The awards are an example of the support the BCHL governors provide to our officials and to our officiating program,” Adams said. “I’d like to thank our governors for this support as well as Kelly and Brad for lending their names to make these awards more meaningful and for providing an example of what an official should strive to accomplish.”