Source: Jamie Howieson, Laurier Sports Info – withfiles from the Tampa Bay Lightning
TAMPA BAY, Fla. – Former Wilfrid Laurier Golden Hawk men’shockey player Steve Griggs was named the new president of the TampaBay Lightning and Tampa Bay Times Forum, the arena in which theteam plays its games, Monday afternoon by team chairman andgovernor Jeff Vinik.
Griggs, who joined the Lightning less than four years ago astheir chief operating officer, played for the Golden Hawks between1988 and 1992. During his time with the purple and gold, he was amember of two OUAA Championship winning teams in 1988-89 and1989-90, and played with current Laurier head coach GregPuhalski.
Originally from Aurora, Ont., Griggs suited up as a forward forthe Hawks and tallied 18 goals and 26 assists over his four yearcareer.
“Steve has done a wonderful job for us over the past three-plusyears, working with CEO Tod Leiweke and our leadership team totransform the business and develop the brands of the Tampa BayLightning, Tampa Bay Times Forum and the Tampa Bay Storm,” saidVinik upon making the announcement. “I am very pleased to name himpresident today and I look forward to our continued growth as acompany and a leader in the Tampa Bay community. The development ofour Lightning team on the ice, in conjunction with the growth ofour business, undoubtedly positions our organization for a verybright future.”
During his tenure with the Lightning and Times Forum, Griggs hasmanaged a leadership team that has rebranded the organization andsubstantially grown revenues, while helping create a guestexperience in Tampa Bay that is recognized nationally. Highlightsinclude a full arena renovation of the Times Forum at an expense ofmore than $60 million, the team’s appearance in the 2011 EasternConference Final and the subsequent doubling of season ticket salesand an ultimate standings ranking of #2 among 123 major sportsfranchises by ESPN the Magazine in 2011.
“I graciously accept this new role and thank Jeff Vinik and TodLeiweke for giving me the opportunity,” said Griggs. “We have agreat management team and very dedicated employees and I trulybelieve all of us in the organization work for the best owner inprofessional sports. I look forward to continuing on his mission ofdeveloping a world class organization on and off the ice.”
In addition to his work in Tampa Bay, Griggs has worked with theOrlando Magic (Executive Vice President Sales and Marketing-3years), the Minnesota Wild (Vice President of Sales and Marketing-8years) and Maple Leafs Sports and Entertainment (various roles6years), leading sales and marketing initiatives and strategies foreach, while also opening a new arena in each locale.