April 10, 2009 - Eastern Professional Hockey League (EPHL)
The Eastern Professional Hockey League (EPHL) has named Curtis Russell as President. Russell follows Tim Kolpien, who has stepped aside as president to focus on other growth opportunities for his primary business. Kolpien will remain involved in the league by providing team support services offered by the league.
Russell, co-owner and President of the 2008-09 EPHL Champion Jersey (West Orange, NJ) Rockhoppers, will be the second president of the league. Russell and Kolpien are two of the four founders of the league, which just completed its inaugural season.
"It\'s an exciting time for the EPHL," commented Russell. "We had a successful first season, and we have meaningful regional opportunities for sponsors. We expect to have at least six markets field EPHL teams for the 2009-10 season. Despite the challenging economy, we are growing and will present an exciting product to new fans in New England next season."
EPHL Commissioner Jim Riggs expected the details on the teams joining the EPHL would be announced by late May, with the schedule released in June. "We have strong ownership groups contacting us each week," Riggs said. "But due diligence takes time. Most of them are more realistic for 2010-11, when we expect to grow beyond six teams. Up to eight teams is a possibility for next season. We\'ll see how things develop over the next six weeks."
Riggs also lauded Kolpien\'s contributions to the EPHL. "As one of our founders, Tim is due credit for taking the risks involved with starting up a new league. As we grow into the future, the steadfast dedication of people like Tim Kolpien, Curtis Russell, Igor Mrotchek, and Alan Friedman, as well as the fans and sponsors who supported us so well in 2008-09, form the base that we will build on moving forward. Tim will remain involved at the league level as a useful resource for our member teams."
Kolpien, principle owner of the Danbury (CT) Mad Hatters, is currently in discussions with three potential ownership groups for the team and expects a new ownership structure for the Mad Hatters to be announced in early May. "Danbury is a great EPHL market," Kolpien said. "It deserves to be at the center of the EPHL as the league grows. There will be a great second season in Danbury."
For more information on the Eastern Professional Hockey League please go to www.ephl.com