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Hockey Canada and RBC Financial Group Name New Brunswick Man As National Winner of The RBC Local Hockey Leaders Program
Saint John, New Brunswick Man Receives $25,000 For Minor Hockey And Will Be Featured In Hockey Hall of Fame
February 24, 2004

TORONTO, ON – Hockey Canada and RBC Financial Group today named Art Comeau of Saint John, New Brunswick the national winner of the first ever RBC Local Hockey Leaders program.

Comeau was chosen from the 13 regional winners of the RBC Local Hockey Leaders program, announced on . As national winner, Comeau will receive a $25,000 donation from RBC for a local hockey cause in his

Comeau was honored as the national winner of the RBC Local Hockey Leaders program based on his coordination of a school hockey league that allows more than 400 Saint John youth to play hockey on eight junior high and 28 elementary teams.

“For 34 years, Art has been coordinating school hockey for underprivileged kids,” said Mike Dawson in his submission essay. “Art is a true local hero and there are thousands of individuals who have been able to experience hockey over the past 30 years in the Saint John area that can attest to this.”

Hockey Canada, RBC Financial Group, the Hockey Hall of Fame and hockey commentator Ron MacLean launched the RBC Local Hockey Leaders Program to recognize behind-the-scenes individuals who dedicate their time to grassroots hockey in their community. A panel including Ron MacLean, Hockey Hall of Fame representative, Ron Ellis, Olympic Gold Medalist Hayley Wickenheiser and Hockey Canada officials reviewed submissions and selected winners based on hard work, dependability, enthusiasm, leadership and commitment to making hockey an accessible, community-binding and positive experience in the community.

“Art Comeau has had a positive impact on a lot of young hockey players in his community, and we’re proud to recognize his commitment,” said Ann Louise Vehovec, senior vice-president, RBC Financial Group. “Art exemplifies everything the RBC Local Hockey Leaders program represents: commitment, passion and leadership.”

"Congratulations to Art Comeau for being chosen as the national winner of the RBC Local Hockey Leaders program," said Bob Nicholson, president, Hockey Canada. "The dedication of volunteers involved in hockey, such as Art Comeau, is the reason why the game of hockey from coast to coast in our country is so strong."

The regional winners, one from each of the Hockey Canada 13 regions, all received an autographed Team Canada jersey and, along with Comeau, will be recognized in the Hockey Hall of Fame.

2004 RBC Local Hockey Leaders:
Region RBC Local Hockey Leader Nominated By
NATIONAL WINNER plus New Brunswick Art Comeau, Saint John, NB Mike Dawson
Hockey North Joe Walsh, Yellowknife NWT Joe Latremouille
British Columbia Jane Herman, Chase, BC Jane Torbohm
Alberta Kevin Yellowaga, Pincher Creek, AB Rick Carter
Saskatchewan Vince Stevenson, Shaunavon, SK Cam Dickie
Manitoba Alan Vergouwen, Toutes Aides, MB Beverly Didychuk
Ontario Martin Porteous, Orangeville, ON Lisa Henrick
Northwestern Ontario Grant Sherred, Kenora, ON Gary Norris
Ottawa District Craig & Janet Shouldice, Nepean, ON Mario Arnone
Quebec Martin Longchamps, Montreal, PQ Phillipe Levesque
Nova Scotia Clint Lettice, Sydney Mines, NS David Lewis
Prince Edward Island Susan Dalziel, Borden, PEI Mike Connolly
Newfoundland & Labrador Gerrard Morry, Stephenville, NFLD Phyllis Hapgood

For more information:

André Brin
Director, Communications
Hockey Canada

Francis Dupont
Manager, Media Relations/Communications
Hockey Canada

Jason LaRose
Manager, Content Services
Hockey Canada

Kristen Lipscombe
Coordinator, Communications
Hockey Canada

Keegan Goodrich
Coordinator, Media
Hockey Canada

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