T-Birds win WHL Business-Marketing Award

For the Reporter

The Seattle Thunderbirds are the recipients of the annual Western Hockey League Business-Marketing Award, the WHL announced today.

The announcement was made at the WHL Awards Luncheon at the Deerfoot Inn in Calgary, Alberta.

"This is a team award and shows all the hard work of our staff this past season. We owe a big thank you to our fans and partners for helping us win this award," said Colin Campbell, T-Birds vice president. "Our fans passion and involvement with the team make the ShoWare Center an exciting place to watch our games. We are looking forward to next season and all that we will have going."

The T-Birds were the Western Conference nominee for the award while the Regina Pats were the Eastern Conference nominee.

All teams in the league then vote on the award winner based on team specific business and marketing information provided by the league, including:

• T-Birds utilization of the WHL FTP to provide audio and video play-by-play highlights to local and national media outlets.

• Second consecutive season team has produced a free Game Day Digital Program that is promoted on the teams website, email newsletter, social media channels and mobile app. This program is something several others teams in the league are now producing due to success of T-Birds with our program.

• The distribution this past season of more than $100,000 by the Thunderbirds Community Sports Foundation to local youth and amateur sports associations, schools, teams and individuals through 50/50 and Jersey Raffles, bringing the total to more than $300,000 the foundation has distributed the last two seasons.

• The team helped raise $200,000 for the Seattle Ronald McDonald House at this year's Hockey Challenge to bring the 16-year total for the Challenge to more than $4.5 million raised.

• The weekly mentorship program at Neely-O'Brien Elementary School in Kent through the team's partnership with Communities in Schools of Kent. This partnership also gave the team the chance to participate in assemblies on responsibility, bullying and goal setting at numerous area elementary and middle schools and at the Muckelshoot Health and Wellness Center.

• The Thunderbirds annual attendance has increased every year the team has played in the ShoWare Center.

• The success of the Director's Mortgage 2-for-Tuesday games which have averaged over 5,000 fans a game for the 10 games, including playoffs, this past season.

• The team's successful third annual Pink The Rink Night partnership with UW Medicine/Valley Medical which raised awareness for early prevention and detection of breast cancer.

Other WHL Awards announced Wednesday:

WHL Player of the Year, Four Broncos Memorial Trophy
Eastern Conference - Sam Reinhart (Vancouver, B.C.), Kootenay Ice

WHL Rookie of the Year, Jim Piggott Memorial Trophy
Western Conference - Nick Merkley (Calgary), Kelowna Rockets

WHL Goaltender of the Year, Del Wilson Trophy
Western Conference - Jordon Cooke (Leduc), Kelowna Rockets

WHL Defenseman of the Year, Bill Hunter Memorial Trophy
Western Conference - Derrick Pouliot (Weyburn, Saskatchewan), Portland Winterhawks

WHL Most Sportsmanlike Player of the Year, Brad Hornung Trophy
Eastern Conference - Sam Reinhart (Vancouver), Kootenay Ice

WHL Scholastic Player of the Year, Daryl K. (Doc) Seaman Memorial Trophy
Eastern Conference - Nelson Nogier (Saskatoon, Saskatchewan) Saskatoon Blades

WHL Coach of the Year, Dunc McCallum Memorial Trophy
Western Conference - Dave Lowry, Victoria Royals

WHL Executive of the Year, Lloyd Saunders Memorial Trophy
Western Conference - Cam Hope, Victoria Royals

WHL Humanitarian of the Year, Doug Wickenheiser Memorial Trophy
Eastern Conference - Sam Fioretti (Calgary Moose Jaw Warriors

WHL Marketing/Business Award
Western Conference - Seattle Thunderbirds

WHL Regular Season Champions, Scotty Munro Memorial Trophy
Kelowna Rockets: GP - 72 W - 57 L - 11 OTL - 0 SL - 4 Points - 118

WHL Top Scorer - Bob Clarke Trophy
Mitch Holmberg (Sherwood Park, Alberta), Spokane Chiefs
GP - 72 G - 62 A - 56 Pts - 118 PIM - 25


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