AJH wants new executive director in place by July after Shaun Hathaway’s exit

Aspen Junior Hockey is entering the final stages of finding a new executive director after Shaun Hathaway was recently let go after seven years in the role with the club.

AJH board president Ryan Doremus said they were down to four candidates from across the country and Canada and hoped to have an offer out to someone in June. The idea is to have the new director in place by early July.

“We have had over 100 candidates from all over the world apply,” the AJH board said in a statement. “We have narrowed the search to four candidates who will be further vetted by having them meet key members of our community in the near future.”

The club’s largest fundraisers are held in the fall with the Stirling Cup and the Fall Faceoff, with the hockey season beginning in earnest soon after.

Hathaway said Wednesday he would be returning to his roots in Colorado Springs, where he recently agreed to become the next director of hockey for Team Colorado and its elite AAA girls hockey teams. He’ll also coach a AAA team among other advisory roles on the Front Range.

“I’m going to be staying busy,” Hathaway said. “Kind of a bummer. Kind of a shocking turn of events, but it’s funny when one door closes, others open. It was certainly the case with me. I was fortunate.”

Hathaway has played a key role in the growth of girls hockey in Colorado over the past few years. And under his leadership, AJH was a driving force behind the short-lived Rocky Mountain Junior Hockey League and the Aspen Leafs U20 junior hockey team, which effectively folded ahead of the 2017-18 season. The league folded after that season.

Hathaway was also behind a partnership with the Finnish Ice Hockey Association, which has brought in a student-coach from Finland each winter to share ideas with the Aspen club.