Sioux Falls Stampede Named USHL Organization of the Year
The USHL announced today that the Sioux Falls Stampede were named USHL Organization of the Year as determined by a vote from USHL Member Clubs.
It is the fifth time Sioux Falls has received the award since joining the USHL in 1999-00, and the third time in the last four years the award has been presented.
Led by then-President/CEO Tom Garrity, the current USHL President and Commissioner, the Stampede led the USHL in attendance for the fifth straight season, averaging 6,563 fans per-game. The club drew 196,882 fans over 30 games, second only to the 2014-15 season in which the Herd broke their own USHL attendance record with 200,597 fans. Sioux Falls drew crowds of over 7,000 fans ten times and crowds of over 10,000 three times during the season at the Denny Sanford PREMIER Center.
Sioux Falls also increased ticket sales and sponsorship by 6% from the previous season and improved group sales numbers by 13% from 2016-17. The club has increased their overall ticket sales by nearly 90% and corporate partnerships by 20% since the 2014-15 season.
On the ice, the Stampede qualified for the Clark Cup Playoffs for the fifth time in six seasons. The club finished with the fifth-best overall record in the USHL and one of the best road records in the USHL (17-10-3).
In the community, the Stampede donated over $200,000 to various organizations including the American Cancer Society, Dakota Dachshund Rescue, Make-A-Wish Foundation, Special Olympics, Sioux Falls Youth Hockey, The Salvation Army and Warriors Never Give Up. The club also made another sizable donation to the Scheels IcePlex, a three-sheet ice complex that serves as the home to youth hockey in Sioux Falls as well as figure skating and other ice sports.
Off the ice, the Stampede were busy giving back to the community. The club was active with local hospitals, schools, the Sioux Falls Flyers Youth Hockey Association, Habitat for Humanity and more. Players were required to spend time each month volunteering their time as a way to give back to the community.
Brendan Bruss Named USHL Executive of the Year
The USHL announced today that Green Bay Gamblers President Brendan Bruss has been named the 2018 Dave Tyler USHL Executive of the Year as determined by a vote of senior management from USHL Member Clubs.
Prior to the start of the 2008 season, Bruss was named President of the Green Bay Gamblers. Under his direction, the Gamblers have been profitable in each of the last 10 seasons.
In 2017-2018, Gamblers are projecting the team’s second-highest profitable year in its 24-year history. The team also achieved its 10th consecutive year of eclipsing 100,000 fans in single-season attendance, finishing second in the USHL in attendance.
During the 2017-2018 season, the Gamblers remained atop the USHL in Facebook followers (27,000) and produced some of the league’s highest viewed fan engagement posts. The team set a single-season record for merchandise sales ($172,491) and also set a single-game ticket revenue record for its annual Teddy Bear Toss game.
During the 2017-2018 season, Bruss was named Lead Director for the Gamblers on the Board of Directors for the USHL. He served on the newly established Budget Committee and the Hiring Committee for the USHL Commissioner.
As a leader off the ice in the sports and entertainment industry, Bruss serves on the Board of Directors in the capacity of Treasurer for the International Ticketing Association (INTIX). INTIX represents over 1,000 ticketing, sales, technology, finance, and marketing professionals who work in arts, sports, and entertainment as well as a full range of public venues and institutions. Members represent organizations from across the United States, Canada and 25 countries from around the globe. He also serves as an original member of the Advisory Ticket Industry Leadership Team (TILT) to FutureTix, Inc. a leading consultant in the live event, sports ticketing industry.
On the ice, the Gamblers qualified for the playoffs for the eighth time in the 10 years Bruss has served as Team President. He has hired four head coaches in the USHL, including a stretch where three different coaches Bruss hired took the Gamblers to the Clark Cup Final in consecutive years (2010-12). His past head coaching hires include Jon Cooper (Tampa Bay Lightning), Derek Lalonde (Iowa Wild - AHL) and Eric Rud (St. Cloud Women’s -WCHA). Past assistant coaches that have progressed in their careers include David Carle, head coach at the University of Denver and Cody Chupp, head coach of the Lincoln Stars.
It is the first time a member of the Green Bay Gamblers has been recognized as Dave Tyler USHL Executive of the Year. The award is named in honor of Dave Tyler, recognizing his leadership and dedication to the USHL and junior hockey in the United States. He served as President of the USHL from 1982-94 and his tenure with USA Hockey ran from 1975 to 2007.
Brendan Bruss, President, Green Bay Gamblers
Headquartered in Chicago, Illinois, the USHL celebrated its 16th season as the nation's only Tier I junior hockey league in 2017-18. The USHL had a record 45 players selected at the 2018 NHL Draft, more than any junior league in the world, and more than 400 players on team rosters last season committed to NCAA Division I schools, further establishing the USHL as the world’s foremost producer of junior hockey talent.