Leadership at Hockey Canada is changing, as longtime CEO Tom Renney announced his pending retirement, with president Scott Smith stepping up to assume the role.
Renney, who was born in Cranbrook, has had a long career in hockey operations as a coach and executive, both with Hockey Canada and the National Hockey League.
“This is a decision I have been preparing for over the past year and while it is never easy, I know the time is right and I am grateful for the past eight years,” said Renney, in a news release.
Renney joined Hockey Canada as president and CEO eight years ago, following an extensive coaching career, spanning the Western Hockey League and the NHL, with stints leading numerous national teams at international events such as the Olympics and World Championships.
“I am appreciative of the opportunity that was afforded to me by past board chair, Jim Hornell, to lead this organization as its president and CEO,” said Renney. “To our Hockey Canada directors past and present, chair Michael Brind’Amour, the volunteers and our incredible staff, I thank you for your dedication, commitment and support of our great game. I thank the people I have met through this game who have all made a positive and lasting impact in my life.”
Smith has been working with Hockey Canada in various positions for over 25 years, and was appointed president in 2017, after Renney stepped down from the role, while retaining CEO duties.
“I also wish to thank and congratulate Scott Smith,” Renney continued. “I know the game will continue to grow and evolve, and that it will continue to make great strides under his leadership. Finally, and most importantly, to my family – my wife Glenda, our daughters Jessica and Jamie, and our grandchildren – thank you for your sacrifices and your support. I look forward being home and spending more time together and supporting you in your own endeavours.
Renney’s coaching resume includes leading the Kamloops Blazers to a WHL title and Memorial Cup championship in 1992, with a storied roster that featured fellow Cranbrookian Scott Niedermayer, along with Darcy Tucker, Darryl Sydor, Corey Hirsch and Craig Bonner.
Renney also had coaching stops in the NHL with the Vancouver Canucks, New York Rangers, Edmonton Oilers and Detroit Red Wings, before signing on as Hockey Canada’s top executive.
During his coaching career, Renney also led Team Canada at the 1994 Olympics, capturing a silver medal, and picking up three gold, three silvers and two bronze medals while coaching in various roles for the national squad at the World Championships.
Over the course of his management tenure at Hockey Canada, Renney has helped guide the national men’s, women’s and para-teams to to 28 medals in international competition.