Central Alberta man awarded with honour

An Eckville man has landed a fairly prestigious honour from Hockey Canada.

Former Hockey Alberta president and current board member Terry Engen was named the 2011 Outstanding Volunteer of the Year at Hockey Canada’s recent annual general meeting in Calgary.

“Receiving this award has been a very humbling experience,” said Engen.

“The award itself, in my mind, is recognition of not only the recipient, but it also conveys the true meaning of a team effort. Without a team, very little can be accomplished.”

For the last 25 years, Engen has devoted countless hours to minor hockey, including serving as a director on the Eckville arena board, making sure that the game is available and accessible to countless numbers of local children.

“In all my years of volunteering, I think the biggest accomplishment has been in the relationships that have been built,” said the former reeve of Lacombe County.

“Through those relationships in the hockey family, have come life lasting friendships that are second to none.”

The award came as no surprise to Annie Orton, the president of Hockey Alberta.

“Terry has given so much to the game of hockey in Alberta and he is definitely deserving of this honour,” said Orton.

“He has impacted the lives of many children and significantly contributed to the success and growth of hockey in Alberta. We are lucky to have him on our team.”

Despite spending more than a quarter century volunteering, Engen has no plans of stopping any time soon.

“Volunteering in hockey is still so important to me,” said the fifth generation farmer.

“The game will continue to change and we have to be able to guide that change with the best interests of every participant in mind. Volunteers are still the foundation of what makes hockey the game of choice for all Canadians.”