Mark Frankenfeld is in his tenth full year as Commissioner and President of the North American Hockey League and his 18th overall. As commissioner, his responsibilities include overseeing the day-to-day operations and all business aspects of the league, including but not limited to expansion, marketing initiatives, rules & regulations and player development.
During Frankenfeld's nine-year tenure, the NAHL has stabilized into one of only two non-tuition-based premier developmental junior leagues in the country. During that span the league has not only grown, but expanded into markets that were once considered off limits for junior hockey. One of the biggest trends that has occurred under Frankenfeld's watch is NAHL teams emerging in former minor league hockey markets and becoming successful and stable.
Frankenfeld has laid the foundation for continued success, expanding the footprint of the league to 24 teams representing 11 states, allowing the league to continue to grow and truly become America's only 'National League' when it comes to junior hockey.
Frankenfeld, a member of USA Hockey's Junior Council, is also the driving force behind the NAHL Showcase, which celebrates its 13th anniversary this season, the creation of the NAHL Top Prospects Tournament and the North American Prospects Hockey League (NAPHL), which is made up of 35 Midget Major and Minor teams that compete at the Tier I youth level.
Five years ago, Frankenfeld played a vital role of the acquisition of the Central States Hockey League, which was redeveloped in the North American 3 Hockey League (NA3HL). Frankenfeld has now grown the NA3HL to 48 teams that now compete at the Tier III Junior level, which includes a new division in the Northwest and an expanded division in the South.
All take advantage of the unique vertical exposure model set forth by Frankenfeld, in which players are showcased in a series of unique league-wide events designed to bring everyone together under one roof several times a season for enhanced exposure of players at all levels to junior and college scouts.
Prior to assuming his role as commissioner, the Wright State University graduate served as the league's director of hockey operations.
Behind the bench in the NAHL, Frankenfeld was the head coach of the Dayton Gems during the 2003-04 season and spent four seasons as assistant coach and assistant general manager for the Texas Tornado from 1999-03. He was also an assistant coach with the Cleveland Jr. Barons for one season. Prior to working in the NAHL, Frankenfeld gained valuable experience in the collegiate ranks, spending four years as an assistant coach with Miami University (NCHC) and one as an assistant with Buffalo State University (SUNYAC). Frankenfeld has also coached at the high school and Midget AAA levels, as well as at USA Hockey Select Festivals, giving him more than 20 years of coaching experience.
Frankenfeld resides in Frisco, Texas with his wife, Kira. Frankenfeld has a son, Brody, and two daughters, Charlee and Bella.
Denny Scanlon is in his eighth season as Vice-President of Hockey Operations for the North American Hockey League. Scanlon also serves as Commissioner of the NAHL's affiliate League, the NA3HL.
Scanlon oversees all aspects of hockey operations for the NAHL, NA3HL, and NAPHL and provides counsel to member teams on compliance with League rules and Bylaws. He is also responsible for the preparation, review and negotiation of a variety of legal documents for the NAHL.
Scanlon has vast experience at all levels of hockey, including the National Hockey League (NHL), where he served as an amateur scout for the New York Islanders from 2008-2011. Prior to joining the Islanders, Scanlon spent five years as Hockey Operations Coordinator for the Minnesota Wild from 2000-2005.
From 2006 thru 2009 Scanlon worked for the Minneapolis law firm of Holmes and Associates, where he practiced in the areas of Real Estate and Corporate Law.
Scanlon graduated from Miami University in Oxford, Ohio in 2000 and earned his Law Degree from William Mitchell College of Law in St. Paul, Minnesota in 2006. Scanlon currently resides in Plano, Texas.
Alex Kyrias is in his seventh season as Director of Communications and Sales for the North American Hockey League. Kyrias oversees all marketing, public and media relations for the NAHL, NA3HL, and NAPHL, as well as, all league-wide broadcasting, corporate partnership, equipment supplier and sales initiatives. Kyrias can be heard on various league-wide broadcasting initiatives including Inside the NAHL, the NAHL Top Prospects Tournament, NAHL TV and the annual NAHL Draft.
Prior to the NAHL, Kyrias spent three years working in professional hockey. In 2007-08, Kyrias worked for the Augusta Lynx of the ECHL as the Director of Public and Media relations and play-by-play voice before joining the Iowa Stars/Iowa Chops the next season as the American Hockey League (AHL) team's Vice-President of communications and play-by-play broadcaster. In 2009-10, Kyrias served as the Vice-President of sales and marketing of the then International Hockey League's (IHL) Quad City Mallards.
No stranger to the NAHL, Kyrias served as the Director of Communications and radio play-by-play voice for the Texas Tornado from 2002-07, where he called the 2005 NAHL All-Star Game and three consecutive NAHL Robertson Cup National Championship Games.
Kyrias holds a Bachelor of Science Degree in Kinesiology-Sports Communications/Broadcast from Indiana University in Bloomington, Indiana, where is also was a goaltender on the hockey team.
He and his wife, Dory, reside in Flower Mound, Texas, along with their two daughters Dorothy and Ellie.
Fraser Ritchie is in his ninth year with the North American Hockey League with his role as Director of Hockey Administration.
Ritchie oversees league logistics, scheduling, operations and daily support for member organizations and league operations. He also oversees the tracking and accuracy of all statistics and standings for the NAHL, NAPHL, and NA3HL as the HockeyTech administrator.
Ritchie has served on the Board of Directors for the Dallas Junior Hockey Association and the Allen High School Hockey Club, Advisor to the AT&T Metroplex High School Hockey League and served as President of the North Texas Hockey League for three years. In 2006-07, Ritchie was named the Volunteer of the Year for Youth Hockey by the Dallas Stars.
Away from the rink, the former minor league hockey player spent 38 years with Nortel Networks, specializing in engineering sales support, project management of large multi-million dollar programs and customer service.
He and his wife, Michelle, reside in Allen, Texas.
Craig Barnett enters his fourth season as Director of Player Personnel. A former professional hockey player with 20 years of coaching and administration experience at the NCAA I, II, and III level, Barnett oversees league-wide scouting efforts including directing the Event Scouting System as well as providing NCAA Education and Compliance resources for the NAHL, NA3HL, NA3EHL and NAPHL. Barnett's experience and relationships in the college hockey world provides a unique perspective to coaches and players in the NAHL family of leagues looking to gain opportunities at the next level.
A native of Oakville, Ontario, Barnett played college hockey at Plattsburgh (NY) State University in which he was a member of the 1987 NCAA Championship team. He was also named to their all-decade team (1985-1994) and was the university's Student-Athlete of the year in 1989.
Barnett then played professionally in the New York Ranger organization for two years before entering the coaching ranks. Barnett started the hockey program at the University of Findlay (OH) in 1995 and took that program from club status to the NCAA I level as a charter member of the CHA (College Hockey America).
In 2002, Barnett became the Hockey Director and Assistant Athletic Director at Lake Forest Academy, a prestigious boarding school on the north shore of Chicago. Barnett then became the Director of Athletics at Becker College in Worcester, MA where he was instrumental in starting their NCAA III hockey, football and lacrosse programs. Two years later, Barnett landed the Director of Athletics position at Mercyhurst College in Erie, PA where he was responsible for 24 NCAA II varsity sports as well as their 2 NCAA I hockey programs.
In 2011, Barnett was named the Commissioner of the American Lacrosse Conference, a league who had won seven of the past nine NCAA I Championships before being absorbed by the Big Ten conference in 2014. This past year, Barnett became the Commissioner of the Midwestern Intercollegiate Volleyball Association, a NCAA I/II league whose conference member Loyola University has won the past 2 NCAA Championships. Craig resides in Erie, Pennsylvania with his wife Andrea and three children, Olivia, Braeden and Jace.
Shannon Smith is in her third year with the North American Hockey League and joins the staff as the Coordinator of Finance and Administration. Smith will also serve as the Event Coordinator and will handle league merchandising.
Prior to joining the NAHL in 2014, Smith spent four years with the NAHL’s Texas Tornado serving as the team’s Director of Business Operations from 2009-13.
Smith is originally from Vinita, Oklahoma. Prior to working for the Tornado, she spent twelve years with Skyview Satellite Networks where she served at the Director of Contract Services, managing commercial inventory in twenty-five programming products, including MLB, MRN, NBA, NFL and NHL radio broadcasts as well as two State News Radio Networks.
Smith graduated Cum Laude from Arizona State University with a Bachelor of Science in Justice Studies. She has four children, Zachary, Madison, Hunter and Garrett and resides in Flower Mound, Texas.
Leah Forester is in her first season as Coordinator of Marketing and Design for the North American Hockey League.
Prior to joining the NAHL, Forester worked for the Austin Rodeo in Austin, Texas. She also has experience in hockey, previously working as a Video Production Intern for the New Jersey Devils of the NHL. She also worked as a Production Assistant for the Mizzou Network, an SEC network affiliate with the University of Missouri Athletic Department.
She recently graduated from the University of Missouri with a Bachelor of Journalism in December of 2015.
She is originally from Highland Park, Texas where she currently resides.
Amanda Ruthman is in her first season as Coordinator of Media and Communications for the North American Hockey League.
Prior to the NAHL, Ruthman served as the Sports Information Director for Texas A&M International University in Laredo, Texas. She also spent a season in game presentation with the Buffalo Sabres of the NHL, and two seasons in game operations with the Erie Otters of the OHL.
Ruthman graduated from Niagara University with her Master of Science in Sport Management in May 2015. She completed her Bachelor of Science in Sport Management in May 2014 at the State University of New York at Fredonia.
She is originally from Buffalo, New York, and currently resides in McKinney, Texas.
Joshua Shields is in his first season as the Coordinator of Hockey Operations with the North American Hockey League (NAHL). Shields also serves as the Coordinator of Hockey Operations for the North American 3 Hockey League (NA3HL).
Shields, oversees daily hockey operations for the NAHL and NA3HL, and directly communicates with NAHL member clubs regarding rules, regulations, trades, and player procurement.
Shields has multi level coaching and playing experience in hockey at the Youth, Junior, and College levels. Prior to joining the NAHL he was an Assistant Coach at Ferris State University (NCAA), and an Assistant Coach for the Muskegon Lumberjacks in the United States Hockey League (USHL).
Shields graduated from Ferris State University with a Bachelor of Science in Recreation Leadership and Management, Concentration Sports Management in December 2014.
He is Originally from Royal Oak, Michigan, and currently resides in Frisco, Texas.
Chris Allman is in his fifth season as Director of Officiating for the NAHL and NA3HL. Allman's main responsibilities will include supervising, evaluating and coordinating all the officials within the NAHL and NA3HL.
Allman is no stranger to officiating or the supervisory role at the league level. In the four years previous to working in the NAHL, Allman was the Director of Officiating for the Atlantic Metropolitan Hockey League (AMHL), a Tier III junior league. His responsibilities included educating and developing on ice officials through evaluations and observation.
Allman has a wide array of experience on the ice as an official where for 10 years he has worked professionally in the AHL, ECHL, CHL and SPHL as a referee or linesman. He also has on-ice experience at both the NAHL and USHL levels.
Allman graduated from Eastern Michigan University and currently resides in St. Paul, Minnesota.
Marc Faucette is in his third season in heading up the NAHL Department of Player Safety. Faucette was an on-ice official in the National Hockey League (NHL) for 17 seasons and officiated close to 1,000 NHL regular season and Stanley Cup Playoff games.
Faucette is currently a Supervisor of Officials for the USA Hockey Officiating Development Program and will work alongside NAHL Coordinator of Officials, Chris Allman during the 2014-15 season.
Faucette was born in Springfield, Massachusetts and played both high school and Division II college hockey in the area. He began officiating at the age of 20, drawing on the influence of his father who worked as a linesman in the American Hockey League, including assignments to the Calder Cup Finals.
In 1985, he was hired full-time by the NHL as a referee and before his career ended, he had officiated 912 regular season games as well as numerous playoff assignments, including the NHL Conference Finals. Faucette also skated as a referee at the 1984 Olympic Games in Sarajevo and the 1998 Olympic Games in Nagano, Japan. He was assigned to officiate the 1996 NHL All-Star Game in Boston and the International Ice Hockey Federation's first World Cup of Hockey that same year.
Faucette currently resides in Florida and also serves in a similar role with the Southern Professional Hockey League (SPHL).
Blake MacNicol is in his first year as the Commissioner of the NA3AHL.
MacNicol has spent the past three years working in sales, as well as, coaching youth hockey in the Dallas area.
MacNicol is no stranger to the landscape of the NAHL. He played for the Cleveland Barons of the NAHL during the 2003-04 and 2004-05 seasons.
This past season, MacNicol was the goalie coach for the 18U and 16U Texas Tornado teams of the NAPHL. He also served as an assistant coach for the Tornado 16U team as well.
MacNicol played college hockey for the University of Alabama-Huntsville where he was named to the 2007 CHA All-Tournament Team and received an honorable mention NCAA Player of the Month award that season.
He graduated from Ohio University with a Bachelor of Science degree in Sports Management and a minor in Business Administration.
He resides in Dallas, Texas.