Tampa Bay Lightning director of fan development David Cole has been chosen to receive the USA Hockey New Leader Award by Statewide Amateur Hockey of Florida (SAHOF). The award, given annually to emerging leaders within each USA Hockey affiliate, is presented for contributions in growing or improving hockey within the affiliate. Cole will receive the award at SAHOF’s annual meeting in June.
Cole, who joined the Lightning on June 4, 2001, has helped grow hockey in Florida from the grass roots up. His department runs year-round street, inline and ice hockey clinics throughout Florida, while Cole’s goaltending expertise led USA Hockey to employ him as a USA Hockey Coaching Seminar instructor and a SE District Select U16 and U17 coach.
High school hockey, girls’ hockey and sled hockey have also been major focuses of Cole’s work. In the past four years Cole has helped produce five SAHOF High School State Championships and five Chicago Showcase teams while coaching the Team Florida U14 Girls, the Lady Eels, the Lady Jr. Lightning, the Tampa Bay Titans and Tampa Prep. David is an Advanced USA Hockey coach, a Level 3 official, past President of the Central Florida Ice Hockey Officials Association (CFIHOA) and a Member of the Williams College Executive Committee of the Society of Alumni.