The Semiahmoo Ravens minor hockey association has tagged one of the province’s most experienced sports executives to lead its organization.
In late July, the association announced that Scott Ackles, a South Surrey resident, has been hired as executive director, taking over from longtime director Dave Newson, who held the job since 2014 but left the post in June for a new position with BC Rugby.
Ackles brings “significant experience in amateur and professional sports and business,” to the organization, a news release notes.
“We are pleased to welcome Scott to the Ravens. With his sports and business experience he will be an excellent executive director,” said Ravens’ president Jim Barron.
“We expect Scott to capitalize on the work done during Dave Newson’s eight-year tenure as executive director, to create a new vision for our members, and be a leader in our community who will set a path forward for our association.”
Ackles joins newly rebranded and renamed Semiahmoo Ravens Hockey with quite an impressive resume in the sports business world. The son of legendary BC Lions and NFL executive Bob Ackles, the younger Ackles has previously served as president of the CFL’s Calgary Stampeders, chief executive officer with viaSport BC and vice-president of operations for the BC Lions.
He also worked, along with his father, with the Las Vegas Outlaws of the XFL in the early 2000s, and has served as general manager of the 2005, 2009 and ‘11 Grey Cup Championships. He is currently a director with both the B.C. and Canadian Football halls of fame.
“I am thrilled with the opportunity to be joining the Ravens and working in sports at a grassroots level in my own community,” he said.
“I am very much looking forward to quickly transitioning into my role and working with the Ravens’ outstanding coaches, volunteers and all of our members to together build on the success the Ravens have achieved over the past several years.”
In addition to the hiring of Ackles, the Ravens also announced that Suzanne Cyr – who has been involved with the organization for eight years – has been promoted to director of administration.
In her time at Semiahmoo, the release notes, Cyr has “conceptualized and launched the successful March Madness tournament, ensures all Ravens’ programming, events, and seasonal activities run smoothly and that volunteers and members are supported.”
“We are also pleased to see Suzanne get recognized with her promotion – we value her innovative approach, leadership, and overall contributions to the Ravens organization,” Barron said.
Newson will continue to assist the association in an advisory role for the next few months in order to “ensure a smooth transition for our leadership team,” the news release noted.