A long-term resident of Selkirk, Manitoba, Al’s involvement in the sport of hockey dates back over 50 years including 24 of his 33 coaching years with the Selkirk Fishermen in both their junior and minor hockey programs.
During his involvement Al was fortunate to lead his teams to seven league championships including six Keystone Cup appearances with the Junior B Fishermen.
It is estimated that Al has spent nearly 10,000 hours coaching hockey while averaging nearly two bad jokes per game. Although it is widely acknowledged that Al has a good sense of humour, his unselfish contribution to the game over an extended period has benefited countless players, fellow coaches and administrators.
Al’s contribution has not been limited to Manitoba and is always happy to pass along his knowledge and expertise, helping coach a team of Senior players in Australia while on a brief soujourn Down Under. Although Al’s first love is hockey, his commitment to teaching, instruction and coaching has been extended to both minor league baseball and football. Al is a career coach who is very well respected and appreciated by both his peers and colleagues throughout the coaching community. The Fishermen have been a very special part of Al’s life and his legacy is more about the positive impact he has had on shaping the lives of his players than wins and losses. Al is an exceptional coach, teacher and mentor and has been instrumental in planting the foundations for hundreds of former athletes who have gone to become successful community leaders.
Al worked for the City of Selkirk for over 30 years in their Recreation Department and retired in 2008. He has been married to his loving wife Karen for 47 years and they have four children: Tracey, Cale, Leigh and Scott.
The Volunteer of the Year is reserved for special individuals that have made extraordinary contributions to the game or sport and Al’s accomplishments and unselfish commitment stretching over five decades is impressive, notable and clearly worthy of consideration.
Hockey Manitoba is very proud to acknowledge Al Hares as the 2013 – 2014 Volunteer of the Year.