Incoming chairman Pat Quinn (right, with Mats Sundin) will replace Bill Hay (left) on August 1. (Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)
By Allan Muir
Congrats on the new gig! Chairman of the Hockey Hall of Fame. Not bad for a kid from The Hammer.
I’m sure you’ll be telling people that you’ve got some big shoes to fill. Your predecessor, Bill Hay, had a decent run of it since taking the reins in 1999. He oversaw $50 million worth of expansion and renovation to the current Hall location, which is awesome, by the way. I took my kids for their first visit last summer. Not a week goes by without them asking if we can go again this year, so good job, everyone!
Hay also made it easier for women to gain entry to the Hall by setting up a unique category so they wouldn’t have to compete with men for votes. Of course, it took him until 2010 to make that happen, but hey, progress is progress, right?
And that’s really what I want to talk to you about. Progress. Change has occurred at a fairly glacial pace around the Hall. I think you have a chance to address that.
Now as I understand it, most of your time will be spent shaking hands and
shaking people down for funds soliciting donations. Not the most glamorous aspect of the job, but a necessary evil when you’re running a massive not-for-profit like the HOF.
I’m guessing it’ll be your abilities in that area that will determine how highly you’re regarded by the board of directors, so good luck there. But what hockey fans care about is the integrity of the Hall itself.
The thing about you is, you’re a leader. A great leader. Change requires great leadership. See where I’m going here? It’s time for some serious reform around those parts.