Bruce Vance – Meritorious Service
Bruce Vance has worn many hats for the hockey and softball communities in Prince Albert, putting the city on the map on the provincial, national and international landscapes while helping develop the sports and the athletes.
In hockey, Vance was instrumental in bringing a World Junior pre-tournament game to Prince Albert in 2011. Fans enjoyed watching Switzerland and Latvia in advance of the World Juniors in Saskatoon. He also helped bring the ADT Challenge Cup to Prince Albert in 2008 where Team WHL battled Russia. Vance was also awarded the Western Hockey League marketing award in 2007 for his work with the Prince Albert Raiders.
On the local front Vance was the President of the Crescent Heights Community Club for seven years. During his tenure, it was determined the outdoor rink was in need of an upgrade. An NHL sized outdoor rink was built in 2011 as Vance had in the back of his mind to host an Outdoor Classic game. That dream became reality on January 19, 2013 when the first ever Outdoor Classic in Saskatchewan was hosted by the Crescent Heights rink. He chaired a committee and partnered with the Community Club, City, A & W Bears, Mintos and PA Minor hockey to ensure there were benches, penalty boxes, score clock and seating in place to make that piece of history come alive for Prince Albert.
Vance and his wife Liane held the position of co-managers for the A & W Bears Midget Girls AAA hockey team from 2012-15. Vance helped to build a successful program that was run on a professional level to make the Bears a sought after organization in female AAA hockey. He also served as hockey chairman for the 2014 Saskatchewan Winter Games committee where he oversaw both male and female hockey.
In softball he was the co-founder of the Girls Prairie League of Softball (GPLS). The league was founded in 2011 with 21 teams in Albert and Saskatchewan, and has grown to 64 teams in 2015. The GPLS started out as a predominantly Alberta league but as Vance has spread the word other Saskatchewan teams become involved. Prince Albert has been able to host three GPLS tournaments in the city in the first five years of the league’s existence.
On a grass roots level, Vance was a coach with Prince Albert Minor Softball for 10 years as well as a member of league Executive. On the provincial level, he was an ADFO coach for six years, coaching both boys and girls earning a Western Canadian bronze medal in 2007 with Bantam boys and a provincial silver medal in 2012 with Midget girls. He has also sat on the ADFO coaches’’ selection committee.
When it comes to hosting major events, Vance was a host committee member of the 2005 Pee Wee Western Canadian boys and girls fastball championships, the 2006 U19 Canadian mens fastball championships and the co-chair of the 2009 U19 Canadian mens fastball championships. He was recognized being named the 2009 Volunteer of the Year by Softball Saskatchewan. Vance will also assist on the committee that will bring the 2018 World Junior Mens Fastball Championships to Prince Albert.
Vance has been a member of the PA Sports Hall of Fame Board of Directors since 2007. He also co-founded and led the Special Olympics/Raider Education Fund Training for Life Power Breakfast from 2006 to 2016 helping raiser over $100,000.
Bruce Vance will be inducted for Meritorious Service.