AHAI Newsletter
Volume 1 Issue 10 
American Development Model (ADM)
In This Issue
Quick Links
2013-14 AHAI Calendar 
Newsletter Archive
And The Signed Blackhawks Jersey Winner Is......
A Step aHead ImPACT Baseline Testing Survey

Jon Smoter
Highland Park Falcons!

Jon participated in the A Step aHead ImPACT Baseline Testing Survey and will receive a signed Blackhawks jersey. Thank you to everyone who participated in this important survey.  Make sure to read all about the survey results in this issue of the AHAI e-Newsletter.
A Step aHead FREE 
Registration NOW OPEN!

FREE Registration is NOW LIVE! Click HERE to register today! 
2013-14 CEP Clinic Schedule
All coaches are required to be certified at the appropriate level for the upcoming season. All 2013-14 AHAI CEP Clinics are open for registration ONLY on the USA Hockey Website.
Click HERE for full listing of AHAI/USAH CEP Clinics Dates & Locations
Mandatory High School Presidents' Meeting
There will be a mandatory High School Presidents' meeting on Thursday, September 12 at 7:00 p.m. at the AHAI Center located in the Edge Ice Arena in Bensenville. All Club Presidents are required to attend. If Club President is unable to attend, please send another Club Board Member in place of the President.
Official USA Hockey Certified Roster
What Is It? When Do I Need One?


An Official USA Hockey Certified Roster is a roster that has been approved by AHAI/USA Hockey. It assures that each member of a team has properly registered with USA Hockey and meets the criteria necessary to participate with a team. It assures that the team that has been approved also meets the criteria set by AHAI and USA Hockey. You must have an official USA Hockey Certified roster to participate in any event or game that has been sanctioned by USA Hockey and AHAI. Click HERE for full article.


If you have questions about certified rosters contact your organization's registrar, or Laura Johnson, AHAI Registrar at registrar@ahai2.org.

Ask the Coach
I think my CEP certification is current and at the correct Level. I have taken the Age Specific Module and I have been screened by AHAI. Now I understand that there is a new requirement called SafeSport?
SafeSport is a new USA Hockey initiative that provides everyone not only training to recognize and reduce circumstances for potential abuse to occur, but also the means and procedures for any person to report suspected abuse or misconduct (including protections from any retaliation or repercussions for such reporting); the procedures and means by which USA Hockey and its Member Programs should respond to allegations of abuse and misconduct. While SafeSport is not mandatory for any coaches in the 2013-14 season, it will become mandatory for all coaches to certify in SafeSport during the 2014-15 season.
Editor's Note: Readers may email any questions to Ask the Coach to be answered in future issues.
2 IL Skaters Rostered
U.S. Women's Sled Hockey Program

Erica Mitchell
Chicago, IL
Chicago Blackhawks

Nina Nissly
Lake Forest, IL
GLASA Falcons
4 IL Skaters Rostered
CCM/USAH All-American Prospects Game
On August 26, USA Hockey announced the 40 players who will skate in the second annual CCM/USA Hockey All-American Prospects Game, which will be held Sept. 26 at Consol Energy Center in Pittsburgh, Pa., home of the National Hockey League's Pittsburgh Penguins. The game features 40 of the top American prospects eligible for the 2014 NHL Entry Draft. Twenty-eight players appear on NHL Central Scouting's "Futures List," which highlights players that have potential to be selected in the first three rounds of the draft. Click HERE for full article.

Louie Belpedio, Skokie
Connor Chatham, Belleville
Michael Turner, Chicago
Seamus Malone, Naperville
Just For Coaches
Pre-Season Parent Meeting: A How-To Guide for Coaches
A critical aspect of Responsible Coaching is building the team culture you want by gaining buy-in from athletes' parents. A group meeting with parents and guardians is a wise investment - people tend to live up to expectations if they know what those expectations are! Ideally, you would lead a parent meeting in a private setting where you can have the group's full attention. If this is not possible, then the meeting could occur before one of the first practices or competitions when parents would need to drop off their child anyway. It is a great idea to create an agenda for these meetings. Click HERE for some great ideas regarding how to conduct your parent/guardian meeting.
Attention Parents!
What You Should Expect From Your Child's Coach
What should parents expect from their coach? At the beginning of every season, coaches typically hold a parent meeting. These meetings are designed for the coach to relay to the parents the expectations he/she has for your child, the team, and the parents. They may include administrative subjects or logistics. But in many cases they don't include what your expectations are for the coach. While some coaches will touch on it, here are a few things that a parent should expect form their child's coach. After all they spend a lot of time with your kids!  Click HERE for 8 things every parent should expect from their child's coach.



Hockey is here! It was a great summer but let's get to hockey season already!


Did you know that every year every official must recertify in order to officiate? Well, they do. And this year is no different. This year every official is required to complete an online video session and successfully pass the imbedded exams; attend a seminar conducted by the Illinois Hockey Officials' Association; pass the USA Hockey online exam; and levels 2, 3 and 4, must pass the closed book exam administered during the seminar. Finally, all level 4 officials must take and pass a rigorous skating exam. And we do this every year. We do this every year because rules change; officials must get into the mindset to officiate; and expectations must be laid out to the officials as to the upcoming season.


But the process of officiating is not complete simply because an official registered and complied with the above requirements. During the hockey season, all Illinois officials are subject to evaluations by AHAI and IHOA through a process where an evaluator is assigned to observe a game and file a written evaluation report for the officials in the game. The officials are rarely told about the presence of the evaluator before the game but at the end of a game, the evaluator will meet with the officials and discuss their strengths and weaknesses evidenced during the game. After the discussions are complete, the evaluator prepares and files a written summary of the game and the officials' strengths and weaknesses. These reports are used by me and the Evaluation Committee to determine if an official is skating at a level commensurate with his/her abilities. Further, the reports are used to determine the appropriateness of the assigning process and if officials are not meeting the expectations laid out during the seminars, they are encouraged to attend any of the continuing AHAI/IHOA Development sessions to become better officials. Officials who continually receive negative evaluations and who do not make the effort to become more proficient may ultimately lose game assignments.


Now clearly, there are not enough man hours and resources available to evaluate every game throughout the season and this is where you the player, fan, coach or administrator come into play. Every person observing or participating in a hockey game has the opportunity to evaluate an official after the game is completed. You may head to the IHOA website and click the link regarding evaluating an official. A drop down menu appears and you may provide all of the information and your comments about an official in this menu.


A caveat before you fire off your evaluation. The entire evaluation process is designed to help officials become better officials. It is not designed, nor will you receive a response to, an evaluation which is nothing more than a venting letter. We are looking for objective reporting about an official and how we can assist the official to become better at his/her craft. Therefore, reporting facts, without emotion or personalized statements, is the best way for us to help the official. And please remember, officiating is not an easy thing to do. An official must combine his/her physical abilities with judgment and game management in order to officiate properly and sometimes the challenges are great. Will mistakes occur? The simple answer is "absolutely". But remember, the officials are always trying to get it right.


If you would like to file an evaluation report, I encourage you to do so as long as you are filing the report with the thought of helping the official become a better official and not simply as a method of venting your frustrations.


Have a great season!


Mike Barrett,

Illinois Referee in Chief &

AHAI Supervisor of Officials


No Bull:  Cyberbullying in Youth Sports
By Bob Melton

You could say I've kept my stick on the ice for decades and have remained ready for every opportunity that's given me more playing time or otherwise extended my hockey career.


I began as a Mite with the Northbrook Bluehawks (formerly the Blues). In high school, I played varsity all four years at Glenbrook North while also skating for the Niles Rangers Midget AAA. I then went on to play in the USHL winning two JR A National Championships, followed by four great years of Division 1 hockey here in Chicago with the UIC Flames. I have been coaching here in Illinois for over 20 years. I've served as New Trier's Hockey Club coach for the past 16 years, leading the Green team to 9 state championships and 2 National championships. Along the way, I was honored in 2009 to be inducted into the Illinois Hockey Hall of Fame as a player. Hockey has been and continues to be very good to me.


However, in addition to the many victories I've been a part of and the sense of camaraderie and sportsmanship I've experienced over the years, I've also seen my fair share of low and late hits-both on and off the ice. Outside the arena, I'm referring to bullying tactics that demean the sport and debase the players, with young athletes all too often at the center.


Because kids of every age have 24/7 Internet access, the statistics tell us that cyberbullying in particular is expanding at 5-G speed.

  • 88% of social media-using teens have seen or heard someone be cruel on a social network site.
  • 38% of online girls report being bullied, compared with 26% of online boys. Specifically, 41% of older girls (15-17) report being bullied-more than any other age or gender group
  • On Facebook, one million children were harassed, threatened, or subjected to other forms of cyberbullying in 2011 alone. 

Youth sports are not exempt from these startling statistics; many players have been on the sending and receiving end of embarrassing, hostile, or threatening electronic messages. Specific to sports, cyberbullying often links to the game's competitive nature. The target may be an opposing team's MVP, and hurtful electronic posts may be used to psych out the competition. A young athlete also may resort to cyberbullying when he or she is jealous of a fellow teammate's playing time or star status. But often it's the weaker or younger players that are targeted, with hateful posts about how they bring the team down.


Click HERE to read about how the experts suggest that parents and coaches can support children subjected to cyberbullying, help stop this destructive pursuit, and teach our kids electronic media etiquette. 

A Step aHead Presents:
What Every Hockey Mom Should Know About Concussions

Hockey Moms* are encouraged to attend this FREE event on Wednesday, September 25 from 7:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. to learn more about concussion signs/symptoms, baseline and post-injury testing, and the treatment of concussions. You will also hear more about free baseline testing through the "A Step aHead" program. The event includes a Blackhawks Locker Room tour and Blackhawks giveaways! Registration is strongly encouraged.  Click HERE for Event Agenda.



*This is a Mom's only event....no children please
Hayes Suburban Division
IHSHL Unanimously Votes to Rename Division

George Hayes has decided to retire from High School hockey. After 35 years of selfless contribution, George will no longer be part of our HS hockey landscape. But his legacy and his name will continue. In honor of the lifetime contributions to high school hockey by George, the IHSHL Suburban Division has unanimously voted to rename itself the "Hayes Suburban Division". George, his wife and his sons have all been completely immersed in HS hockey. An AHAI Hall of Fame Inductee, George was the founder and motivator behind the IHSHL Suburban Division and Illinois Suburban Hockey League. He has always placed the best interests of the players in the forefront. "George has always had a love of the JV player and with that in mind the Hayes Division will also name it's JV Champion trophy the Hayes Cup", said Ron Abel, new President of the Hayes Division. Steve Silvey, VP of the Hayes Division added, "we will miss George's hockey leadership and perseverance, and wish him well in his future challenges, and his retirement". Thank you and God bless you, George.
Illinois Hockey Hall of Fame Seeking Nominations!
Class of 2013

The Illinois Hockey Hall of Fame (IHHF) is seeking nominations of qualified individuals to be enshrined into the Illinois Hockey Hall of Fame for the Class of 2013.  The IHHF was established to recognize and honor the tremendous contributions of individuals who, through their dedication and tireless efforts, helped to pave the way for the future generations of kids to enjoy the great sport of ice hockey. The mission statement of the IHHF is: "To honor the excellence of those individuals who, through their exceptional endeavors both on and off the ice, have contributed in an extraordinary way to enhance the sport and image of hockey in Illinois." 

The IHHF Induction Selection Committee consists of all of the living past and present presidents of the Amateur Hockey Association of Illinois.

Click HERE for Nomination Qualifications & Procedures. If you know of someone who meets the criteria set forth in the IHHF Qualification & Procedures, you are encouraged to click HERE for Nomination Form. To view past inductees click HERE.
A Step aHead Survey Results
By Elizabeth Pieroth, PsyD, ABPP
Ass. Director, NorthShore Sports Concussion Program & Concussion Specialist to the Chicago Blackhawks

Three years ago, four local organizations came together to address concussions in youth hockey players. Through the generosity of the Chicago Blackhawks, AHAI, Athletico, and NorthShore University HealthSystem and the dedication and hard work of a number of people within these organizations, the "A Step aHead" program was developed. The aim of this program was two-fold: provide free baseline neurocognitive testing to AHAI members and educate the hockey community as a whole on concussion prevention, assessment and treatment.

Free ImPACT computerized testing was first made available in 2011 and then again in 2012 but the program also strongly focused on education. For this reason, brochures providing extensive information about concussion signs/symptoms, assessment and treatment options were made available for all AHAI members. Each AHAI coach was provided with enough brochures for every player on their team. Additionally, coaches were given laminated cards and clipboards with the signs and symptoms of concussion so they could better detect possible concussions in their players. Coaches were required to attend an educational presentation on concussions and given information on additional educational resources. Parents and athletes were also given a presentation on concussions at the 2011 and 2012 AHAI "College Night" gatherings. To increase awareness of the program, posters were placed in local hockey rinks, emails and newsletter were sent to AHAI members, and public service announcements by Eddie Olczyk were placed on each organizations' websites, played at the United Center during Blackhawk games, and even aired on Comcast Sports between periods.


Despite all of our efforts, we have found that many of you did not know about the A Step aHead Program and we wondered why. We wanted to know how we could improve both the awareness of and participation in the program. So we asked you to tell us what we could do better and you responded! More than 1,200 people completed our survey and we thank you for taking the time to respond. We wanted to provide some information about your responses and address some of the concerns. Unfortunately, there are some changes to the program that we are unable to accommodate but we listened carefully to your feedback and will incorporate many of your great suggestions.


Click HERE for Survey Results

Earn a $2,500 Responsible Sports Grant
The Fall 2013 Community Grant Is Now Open. 

It's that time of the year again. Fall is here and the road to a successful and colorful fall sports season is about to unfold with the Liberty Mutual Insurance Responsible Sports Fall Community Grant. The Community Grants program is an easy - and fun - way to earn $2,500 for your youth sports organization. Maybe you applied for a Community Grant in a different period (there are Spring and Fall Community Grants programs every year). Or maybe you've never heard of the program until now. Either way, it's not too late to grab your group, jump online and get started! With a little bit of work, paired with strong networking and teamwork, your hockey program could be one of our 15 Responsible Sports Community Grant winners this fall season. Click HERE to get started.

Skate at the United Center!
Juniorhawks & Intermission Skates

Hey Coach, want your team to skate at the home of the 2013 Stanley Cup Champions JuniorHawks is your chance to skate on the United Center Ice prior to a Blackhawks home game. The 2013-14 lottery form is now available so ENTER your team now! Ever wonder what it's like to skate in front of 20,000 Blackhawks fans?! ENTER your team now for the Intermission Lottery to skate during a 2013-14 home game. If you have any questions, please email Matt Brooks, Manager of Youth Hockey Sales for the Chicago Blackhawks at mbrooks@chicagoblackhawks.com.

Future Gains: 5 Ways to Shape Your Hockey Future
By Mark Janzen, HockeyNow.com

Growing up as a minor hockey player, you can't help but wonder where the game might take you. There are millions of dollars waiting for a few, and there is a lifetime of enjoyment available to many. What's your future? Right now. Right this second. It has never been easier to be discovered. As burgeoning youngsters play Canada's frozen beautiful game, the odds of getting spotted in Anahim Lake, B.C. or Lac La Biche, Alta. or Moose Factory, Ont. are as good as ever.


With ever-improving technology and the creation of YouTube, the scouting world has become a whole lot smaller. For players wanting to be seen, times couldn't be better. At the same time, for those young hockey players, reaching their ultimate goal - that, of course, being the National Hockey League - has never been more difficult. The reality is that there are 690 jobs in the NHL on any given night - 23 players per team multiplied by 30 teams - and with more than 425,000 boys registered for hockey in 2011/12 in Canada alone, the challenge of making it is extremely daunting. Click HERE for 5 ways to shape your hockey future.