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RELEASE: Eight Employees Advancing Women in Hockey to Announce 2021 Picks

Select members of Blackhawks hockey operations and youth hockey departments to announce team's 2021 NHL Draft selections

by Chicago Blackhawks Communications /

The Chicago Blackhawks today announced that select members of the organization's hockey operations and youth hockey departments will announce the club's draft picks at the podium during this weekend's National Hockey League Draft.

Among the eight Blackhawks staff members announcing picks include: Annie Camins, Senior Director, Youth Hockey; Kendall Coyne Schofield, Player Development Coach & Youth Hockey Growth Specialist; Mary DeBartolo, Senior Coordinator, Hockey Strategy & Analytics; Meghan Hunter, Director of Hockey Administration and Amateur Scout; Laura Jordan, Manager, Developmental and Girls Programming; Kelsey Koelzer, Scout, Player Personnel; Brigette Lacquette, Pro Scout; and Karilyn Pilch, Scout, Player Personnel.

Three of the women announcing the selections are recent hires in the Blackhawks Hockey Strategy & Analytics and Pro Scouting departments:

Karilyn Pilch joins the Blackhawks as a scout, player personnel. She recently held the title of General Manager for the Boston Pride of the NWHL, after being hired in 2019. Pilch was the architect of the 2021 Isobel Cup champions. The prior season, her first as GM, the Pride were the NWHL Regular-Season champions. In her role, Pilch's responsibilities included evaluating prospects in multiple leagues, negotiating player contracts, managing the salary cap and coordinating media availabilities.

A graduate of Boston University, Pilch was a Hockey East All-Academic Team honoree while playing for the Terriers. The Salem, New Hampshire native has also worked for BU as Director of Hockey Operations, Saint Anselm College as a coach, NEPS Inc. as a Finance and Accounting Specialist and USA Hockey as a New England District Coach/Evaluator.

Brigette Lacquette comes to the Blackhawks as a pro scout. The Mallard, Manitoba and Cote First Nation, Saskatchewan native became the first First Nations Woman to play on Canada's Olympic hockey team in 2018 in PyeongChang and helped her country win a silver medal. Lacquette made her IIHF Women's World Championship debut in 2015, winning the first of two back-to-back silver medals with Canada. Additionally, Lacquette was named the 2017 Team Manitoba Top Female Athlete.  

An alum of the University of Minnesota-Duluth, Lacquette has played on Canada's National Senior Women's Hockey team since 2015, while also accumulating extensive experience as a player evaluator through years of coaching.

Kelsey Koelzer will join Chicago as a scout, player personnel. The Princeton University graduate comes to the Blackhawks while remaining as the Head Coach of Arcadia University, a position she has held since being hired in 2019. Koelzer was the first Black Women's Head Ice Hockey Coach in NCAA history.

A Horsham, Pennsylvania native, Koelzer was a three-time First-team All-Ivy League honoree and was named the Ivy League Player of the Year in 2016. She was also the first-overall selection of the NWHL Draft later that year. Koelzer led the Metropolitan Riveters to the 2018 Isobel Cup Championship. She served on the NHL/NHLPA Female Hockey Advisory Panel for three years (2018-21) as the group sought to brainstorm and implement initiatives to grow hockey among the female demographic. 

The Blackhawks will make the 12th overall selection on Friday and the Draft will continue Saturday with Rounds 2 - 7. The First Round of the 2021 NHL Draft will air on ESPN2 at 7 p.m. on Friday. Rounds 2 - 7 will air on NHL Network beginning at 10:00 a.m. on Saturday.

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