Chris Hebb stands next to a personalized Toronto Raptors jersey given to him for his 50th birthday by his colleagues at Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment. On Thursday, Hebb was named the commissioner of the BC Hockey League. (File photo)

White Rock’s Hebb named commissioner of BC Hockey League

Longtime sports broadcasting executive to take over from retiring John Grisdale

White Rock resident Chris Hebb has been tagged to lead the BC Junior Hockey League.

The longtime sports broadcasting executive – and one-time anchor of Sports Page, the popular Vancouver sports television program – was named commissioner of the BCHL Thursday.

Hebb replaces outgoing commissioner John Grisdale, who earlier this year announced he would be retiring from the post after 14 years at the helm of the province’s junior ‘A’ league.

“The BCHL has a tremendous reputation in hockey development,” said Hebb in a news release issued by the league Thursday afternoon.

“I’m pleased to continue the good work that’s been done, to give young men a platform to grow as hockey players and a path to a great career. But, I also look forward to helping our 17 teams raise their profile, increase league revenues and solidify our position as the best Junior A hockey league in North America.”

• RELATED: White Rock broadcaster reflects on Sports Page tenure

Graham Fraser, owner of the Penticton Vees and also the chairman of the league’s board of governors, said that Hebb’s resume, as well as his ideas for how to grow the league – which were expressed during the interview process – separated him from other applicants.

“We are confident with Chris’s background and experience that he is the right person to take our league into a new era,” Fraser said.

“We are extremely happy to have him on board.”

Hebbs is a former senior executive for both Orca Bay Sports and Entertainment – the company that formerly owned the Vancouver Canucks – as well as with Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment in Toronto. With MLSE, Hebb oversaw broadcast and digital properties for the Toronto Maple Leafs, Toronto Raptors, Toronto FC and the American Hockey League’s Toronto Marlies. He also ran the company’s three TV networks.

More recently, Hebb has been president of Starting Five Media Consulting, a company that advises sports organizations on business strategy and development.

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