Joe Drago takes lead role with Hockey Canada
Former Northern Ontario Junior Hockey League (NOJHL) commissioner Joe Drago is taking on a new role. He was recently named executive vice-chair for Hockey Canada at its annual general meeting held May 24-26 in Charlottetown, P.E.I.
In addition to being known for his volunteerism and charity work in northeastern Ontario and his 12-year stint as commissioner of the NOJHL, Drago was also the former co-owner of the Sudbury Wolves where he spent 17 years in varying capacities including coach, general manager and president. He also served on the executive of the Ontario Hockey League and is an honoured member of the Sudbury Sports Hall of Fame, where coach of the year award is named in his honour.
“Joe has left his mark on education, sports and community involvement,” said NOJHL commissioner Robert Mazzuca. “His well-deserved selection to this position is a proud moment for the NOJHL and northern Ontario, demonstrating the quality of people involved with the game in our area.”
Drago’s accomplishments include being a member of the hospital board and foundation for 27 years with their foundation naming him the first Life Member. He is also a Life Member of the Canadian Junior Hockey League, the Salvation Army Advisory Board, the Alzheimer Society and the House of Kin. Drago received the Community Builder’s Award for Sports and Recreation, a Hubby Award and is a Paul Harris Rotary Club recipient.
One of his proudest accomplishments was being named the first northerner to receive the Ontario Medical Association’s Centennial Award.
“I’m proud and honoured to be an officer with Hockey Canada,” Drago said. “I look forward to working closely with newly appointed Hockey Canada Chair Jim Hornell and Hockey Canada CEO/President Bob Nicholson.”
Hockey Canada is the country’s largest hockey organization, responsible for female and male hockey throughout the country in addition to Canada’s participation in IIHF events, including the Olympics and world tournaments.