The search for the Canadian Hockey League’s first full-time president has come to an end.
The CHL announced Tuesday that Dan MacKenzie, a long time NBA executive, will begin the role in September.
As President of the CHL, MacKenzie will be responsible for growing the game, along with enhancing the player and fan experience.
“Dan has a unique combination of league operations, sports marketing and business experience along with being a former school teacher. His experience will help the CHL continue to grow and expand our programs and player experience,” said Branch. “The CHL conducted an extensive search to find the ideal candidate to assume this role. Gilles, Ron and I are confident that Dan is that person. We look forward to working with him.”
“It’s an honour to be named the CHL’s first full-time president,” said MacKenzie. “I am thrilled to have the opportunity to work with the Commissioners on strengthening the CHL and building on the strong foundation that currently exists. Growing up and living in Guelph, Ontario I understand the unique position that CHL teams hold in their communities and look forward to working with our teams to deepen the connection with our fans.”
MacKenzie will report to the CHL Executive Council consisting of the commissioners of the three member leagues – David Branch of the Ontario Hockey League (OHL), Gilles Courteau of the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League (QMJHL), and Ron Robison of the Western Hockey League (WHL).
MacKenzie has more than 20 years of experience working at the NBA, including the last eight years as Managing Director of NBA Canada.
During his time leading the NBA in Canada, he spearheaded many of the league’s signature achievements in the country and this season was instrumental in the NBA’s record-breaking year in Canada, that included the most-viewed NBA season in history, a record 32 marketing partners activating across the country, and the all-time mark for NBA merchandise sales.
Branch, who has held the dual role of Commissioner of the OHL and CHL President since 1996, will continue as the Commissioner of the OHL.
MacKenzie currently lives in Guelph with his wife, two children and their dog.