CALGARY, Alta. – The Canadian Junior Hockey League (CJHL) announced Monday that Andy Harkness has been hired as its new CJHL President.
Harkness comes with over 20 years of extensive leadership in the sports and entertainment industry as a Partner / Senior Vice-President, Sports Marketing for SDI Marketing out of Toronto, Ont.
With SDI, he led a number of strategic marketing services with leagues such as the NHL, NBA, CHL, MLB, CFL, etc.
Harkness has also led sponsorship negotiations for a number of high-profile professional athletes across all sports.
“The CJHL is extremely fortunate to be bringing in an individual with the experience and skill-set that Andy has to lead our organization to the next level,” said CJHL Chairman Robert Mazzuca.
“His proven track record with leading executive teams within the sports industry with Marketing, Corporate Strategy, Corporate Structure, and Business Development will be a tremendous asset to not only the CJHL, but our nine member leagues and current 118 teams”.
Throughout his career, Harkness has gained valuable experience in building media partnerships with the top brands and sports properties in North America.
He also served as an Owner/Partner of ARC Sports Group, which focused on the area of player agency.
Harkness got his start in sports with the Barrie Colts of the OHL in 1995 as the assistant to the head coach & general manager.
“I would like to thank the CJHL Board for the appointment as the new President of the CJHL and the confidence in me to lead the organization moving forward,” stated Harkness.
“The CJHL plays a leading role in the growth and development of Junior A players within this country, and I am eager to work with all CJHL partners in driving improvement of this level of the game.”
Harkness has also led endorsement negotiations for high-profile professional athletes and agencies across all sports, including hockey, tennis, basketball, MMA, football, and freestyle skiing.
“With our new president secured, the CJHL eagerly awaits the outcome of the current Hockey Canada governance review and the impact and program outcomes of that review on the Junior A level of the game within the country,” offered Mazzuca.
“With our new leadership in place, the CJHL continues to look to drive improvement at the junior level of the game and we look forward to working with partners who will join us in keeping all levels of the game accountable for stronger governance and leadership within hockey,” added the CJHL Chair.
The CJHL would like to extend appreciation and gratitude to outgoing CJHL President, Brent Ladds for his dedication and services to the CJHL, member leagues/teams, and each of the players that competed each season at the Junior A level of this game, in the country and in pockets of the northern U.S.