St. Louis Amateur Hockey Hall of Fame

 

 

 

 

 

Bio

Kevin's love for hockey began at age 13 with the arrival of the St. Louis Blues in 1967. He and his brothers were soon crafting their own homemade sticks playing hockey in the basement, outside on open fields, school parking lots or any other available surface.

Frank Hanley, of Florissant, MO, guided Kevin towards the Winterland Hockey Organization where he began his goaltending career. Even as he was playing goal he showed an interest in officiating when he refereed his first game, a pick-up game for St. Thomas Aquinas High School students.

He attended C.B.C. Military High School from 1968 through 1972. As a senior he played for C.B.C.'s first hockey team which was also the first year the Mid-States Club Hockey Organization was formed with eight teams. The head coach was Mr. Leo Mann who was assisted by Mr. Jim Healy. The Cadets were knocked out of the playoffs by Vianney in the Semi-Finals with a 4-3 loss in double overtime. The game was unique in the fact that after being tied at the end of the first overtime, the scheduled ice time had run out and the teams were forced to leave the ice. The game had to be completed later that night at the Kirkwood ice rink.

It was during his senior year in high school Kevin's officiating career began to take off. He began officiating youth games locally after being encouraged by Eddie Olson, HOF 2008. Mr. Bob Lake, the manager for Winterland, also took an interest in Kevin's officiating ability and recommended him for the newly formed Junior B League. He began his long affiliation with USA (AHAUS) Hockey and the Missouri Ice Hockey Official's Association during this time.

Kevin was soon officiating at the highest levels of amateur hockey in the St. Louis area as well as a linesman for the St. Louis University Billiken's collegiate team. When the 1980 AHAUS U.S. National Junior B Championships were held in St. Louis for the first time Kevin was selected as the referee for the Championship game. This began a string of 13 consecutive years for Kevin of being selected to officiate USA Hockey National Championships at a variety of levels.

Jerry Burt, HOF 2009, was also a major influence for Kevin by recommending Kevin for the International Hockey League as a linesman. This began a 13 year career in the professional hockey ranks as a linesman in the IHL, ECHL, CHL and the UHL until he retired at the end of the 2001-2002 season.

During his career Kevin was very fortunate to have the opportunity to lines three USA vs. Russia hockey games and in 1994 was selected to work as a linesman in the USA Sports Festival held in St. Louis, MO. This was the last hockey event to be held at the St. Louis Arena which was closed afterward as the St. Louis Blues moved into their current location, then called the Savvis Center.

He's served in a variety positions as a board member and instructor in the Missouri Ice Hockey Officials Association.

In 1994 Kevin was hired to work as an NHL Off-Ice Official. He's served in a variety of positions, assistant score keeper, penalty time keeper, goal judge, penalty box attendant and is currently assigned as a NHL Commercial Coordinator.

In addition to officiating Kevin has been a youth hockey coach with the Valley and Twin Bridges Hockey Clubs after Valley combined with the Granite City Steelers. He is most appreciative to those who encouraged and mentored him along the way. Eddie Olson, HOF 2008, and Bill McKenna, HOF 2008, were two local officials that helped Kevin get started and continued to encourage him throughout his career. Retired NHL officials Brian Lewis and Will Norris also played a major role of inspiring Kevin early in his career.

Kevin's philosophy for officiating was to have fun, enjoy the ride, respect the game, players and coaches, understand it's an emotional game, don't take things to personally and use the rule book as a guide not as the absolute law. He wanted the players to decide the game not the officials. One piece of advice that Eddie Olson passed along early in Kevin's career was:

The first penalty you call is the most important one. It sets the tone of game. If you call a weak hooking penalty you have to call it the rest of the game. Catch the first elbow, high hit, or slash and it will make the rest of the game easier. It's easier to loosen up than to tighten up your penalty calling.

Kevin would like to thank all of the people who supported and guided him throughout his career.

Finally, Kevin would like to thank his family for allowing him to take precious time away from them so he could pursue a second (part-time) career. There were many week days and weekends he was gone driving to Chicago, Indianapolis,