For Kate Whitman Annis, two of her biggest loves are hockey and community.
With an illustrious hockey career coupled with years of experience in government and non-profit work, Whitman Annis was a perfect fit as the new Executive Director of the Devils Youth Foundation.
"This is truly a dream come true for me. It allows me to combine my background in non-profit organizations and philanthropy with my love of ice hockey and all things New Jersey," Whitman Annis explained. "The Foundation has focused on youth and youth development in Newark and New Jersey as a whole and I'm excited to build on that legacy."
Hockey has always been a significant part of her life. Whether as a player, a coach, or a general manager of a professional women's hockey team, her experience is extensive. Hockey is more than a sport for her - it's her life.
"Hockey is an incredible game," said Whitman Annis, who has nearly 30 years of experience in hockey. "I love teaching it and coaching it, I love watching my kids play it. It teaches you so much about life, and I think that's incredibly important."
In addition to a deep hockey background, Whitman Annis was 'Made in Jersey.' Although Kate was born in London, England, the Whitman family settled down in the Garden State.
"New Jersey is home for us," Whitman Annis explained. "We love this state and the fact that I can wake up and go to work every day, and do something that betters our state, is incredibly important to me and my family."
Video: 1-ON-1 | Kate Whitman Annis
Whitman Annis, who has a master's degree in Business Administration from the Solvay Brussels School and ENPC, played hockey for Wesleyan University, coached girls' high school varsity ice hockey in New Jersey and the Metropolitan Riveters of the National Women's Hockey League (NWHL), served as general manager of the Riveters and later director of operations for the W Hockey Partners.
Based on her hockey background and connection to the state, it was a no-brainer for Whitman Annis to become the Devils Youth Foundation's Executive Director.
"I am inspired by the Foundation's mission," she said, "and feel confident that we have an opportunity and platform to empower the youth of New Jersey through sports, entertainment and other avenues."
In her role, Whitman Annis will lead the day-to-day operations of the Devils Youth Foundation, including fundraising, grant strategy, event planning and community partner relationships. Her background in government communications and leadership, extensive work in non-profit operations and decorated career in women's hockey made her a perfect fit for the role.
The Devils Youth Foundation focuses on supporting youth-initiatives throughout New Jersey's underserved communities. For Whitman Annis, this mission was a huge reason she wanted join the Devils and make a difference in children's lives.
"I'm really looking forward to building on the strong foundation that the Devils organization and Harris Blitzer Sports and Entertainment has built in Newark and New Jersey," said Whitman Annis. "(Including) the opportunity to help children and have a lasting impact in the community around wellness, sports, fitness, nutrition, but also the arts."
Whitman Annis is excited to bring the lessons from her favorite sport to the community she grew up in.
"It teaches you incredible skills about life," Whitman Annis said. "We have all different kinds of programming for kids and youth all across New Jersey, and that's a really exciting aspect as well."