The IIHF recently held its bi-annual Officiating Management Seminar in Frankfurt, Germany. The event, organized under the slogan “Together Ahead For The Future,” was attended by 52 delegates from 33 national ice hockey associations. Those participants included on-ice officials, officiating managers, supervisors, instructors, and referees-in-chief from smaller IIHF member nations.
From the IIHF:
As a part of the four-year IIHF Officiating Committee strategic plan the seminar was organized in order to focus attention on the development of officiating programs and assist the national associations on the development of young on-ice officials and management staff.
The program of the seminar included topics concerning the planning of an officiating development program with the focus on developing young on-ice officials in grassroots programs and youth hockey, the principals of scouting and developing on-ice officials, methods of building relations between the officiating management with the associations and leagues, supervision and teaching techniques.
Ken Wheler from the NHL joined as guest speaker with his experience as an officiating manager, in scouting and development, and shared with the delegates the principals and methods of scouting and development of prospect on-ice officials.
Top IIHF referees, active on-ice officials, officiating mangers from different countries and the IIHF Officiating Committee members took part in different panel discussion and forums.
Among the speakers were Claus Christensen (Denmark), Milan Kolisek (Czech Republic) and Beat Kaufmann (Switzerland), who shared information on their officiating programs with their pro leagues.
British referee Joy Johnston, who officiated in the gold medal game of the Olympic women’s ice hockey tournament in Sochi 2014, talked about her practical experience regarding building a national association officiating program from scratch in the United Arab Emirates where she has been working since last year.
Marcus Brill (Germany), Pavel Halas (Czech Republic) and Attila Nagy (Hungary) presented methods of building different national association officiating development programs.
Top IIHF referees Vyacheslav Bulanov (Russia), Daniel Piechaczek (Germany) and Igor Dremelj (Slovenia) took part in panel discussions to talk about their individual career paths on the way to the top.
The different workshops and panel discussions gave the delegates the opportunity to discuss different methods of officiating development that could be implemented in their countries, to discuss and receive answers on scouting and development and to implement IT solutions for officiating.
The IIHF Officiating Managers will reconvene in 2017. Next year, the federation will host its national association referee-in-chief summit.
Best of luck of all those who attended and their respective officials for the upcoming season.