Dr. Bob Smillie will receive the WHL Distinguished Service Award in a ceremony prior to the Kamloops Blazers home game on Friday, March 1st versus the Seattle Thunderbirds.
“I cannot think of a more deserving recipient of the WHL Distinguished Service Award than Bob Smillie,” said Don Moores, President and Chief Operating Officer for the Kamloops Blazers. “Bob has been a tremendous ambassador of the Kamloops Blazers Hockey Club in so many different capacities over the years. He exemplifies what ‘extraordinary contributions’ are when it comes to the amount of time and effort he has spent to help better our hockey club and the WHL.”
Dr. Smillie has been involved with junior hockey in Kamloops since 1973-1974 when he was the Team Doctor for the Kamloops Chiefs. Dr. Smillie has been involved with the Kamloops Jr. Oilers / Blazers franchise since the hockey club moved to Kamloops in 1981. He has held a variety of roles in a volunteer capacity including Team Doctor, Education Liasion, Board of Directors Member and is currently the Executive Director of the Kamloops Sports Legacy Fund. The Kamloops Sports Legacy Fund began with the sale of the Kamloops Blazers in 2007 and has contributed over $3.26 million to local community sports groups in the Thompson-Nicola Region.
“Having served in a volunteer capacity with the Kamloops Blazers organization for close to 40 years, Bob Smillie exemplifies what the WHL Distinguished Service Award is all about,” commented WHL Commissioner Ron Robison. “From his role as a longtime board member with the Blazers, to serving as the Team Doctor and Education Advisor and now in his current role as head of the Blazers Sports Legacy Fund, Bob has played an integral role in the Blazers franchise and it is only fitting he is a recipient of this prestigious award.”
The WHL Distinguished Service Award, which was introduced by the WHL in 2004, is presented annually to individuals who have worked tirelessly behind the scenes on behalf of WHL franchises and in doing so have made an extraordinary contribution at the Club and League levels over an extended period. Two previous recipients of the WHL Distinguished Service Award include Kamloops Blazers contributors Dennis Coates (Board Member) and Doris Rubel (Billet Coordinator).