This award is established to honour individuals who, for many years, have served amateur hockey faithfully, having participated as players, coaches and/or as active members of an association. An individual who has dedicated themselves to the ideals of both Hockey Canada and Hockey PEI and who has worked tirelessly and made an outstanding contribution to amateur hockey on PEI.
Hockey PEI Staff | June 24th
Summerside’s Cory Thomas loves hockey. If you doubt it, you only have to stop by his home and see his vast collection of memorabilia, which is massive and inclusive but primarily focuses on his beloved Montreal Canadiens. A long-time sports volunteer, Cory was the manager for the Summerside U11 AA Capitals this past season. The team fought hard all season and played their hearts out with great success largely in part to the organization, dedication, and the kindness of their team manager, Cory.
In a year like none other in the realm of sport, Cory ensured all operations of the team ran smoothly. With fundraising limited due to Covid, the team still managed to raise money in unique ways thanks to his innovation and dedication, which paid for extra ice time, guided gym time, team masks, and even pizza after practices. He ran the team’s Facebook page, keeping parents informed and communication flowing in a year where members required it the most.
Furthermore, Cory provided live streaming for the U11 AA Capitals games when parents and spectators were not permitted, and even when limited spectators were allowed. His colourful commentary was amazing and appreciated by family and friends near and far. His knowledge of the game and the team’s players kept the viewers as a whole entertained and on the edge of their seats at home, making them feel like they were there in the stands.
Unfortunately, due to COVID-19, the U11 “AA” Capitals season ended earlier than they had hoped. The team was forced to self-isolate just hours before their first provincial championship game. Cory quickly got on the phone to work with Summerside Minor Hockey and Hockey PEI staff to ensure everything was being done to ensure all necessary information was being dealt with. On top of all of this, Cory was the volunteer responsible to let the players and coaches know about the unfortunate news that their season had come to an unforeseeable end. Spirits were low, but Cory checked in almost daily with the families of this team regularly. He even did a Facebook live showing the hockey families affected his vast hockey card collection and memorabilia, providing colourful stories on the players and the circumstances by which he got a particular piece.
Keeping morale high was no new trait to Cory’s manager abilities. He was in the dressing room all season tying skates and ensuring COVID-19 rules were being followed when the parents could not.
The U11 “AA” Summerside Capitals want to thank Cory for his continued commitment and dedication to the sport of hockey and for helping play a part in keeping hockey going and much-needed normalcy for kids and parents.
Hockey PEI is proud to announce Cory Thomas as this year’s recipient of the 2020-21 Volunteer of the Year Award. Congratulations Cory and thank you for everything you do.