Head of operations Rob Mullowney named winner of AHL’s Ken McKenzie Award, the latest in a string of honours for club
St. John’s IceCaps vice-president of operations Rob Mullowney, shown in this file photo during an American Hockey League game at Mile One Centre, has been named the 2012-13 winner of the AHL’s Ken McKenzie Award, presented annually to an AHL team executive who most successfully promotes his or her own club. — Telegram file photo/Joe Gibbons
Rob Mullowney, the St. John’s IceCaps’ vice-president of operations, is the 2012-13 winner of the American Hockey League’s Ken McKenzie Award.
Recognizing the important role played by management in building a successful franchise, the Ken McKenzie Award is presented annually to an AHL team executive who most successfully promotes his or her own club.
Mullowney is part of an IceCaps front office team that saw an increase in ticket revenue and corporate sponsorship revenue last season while selling out every game at Mile One Centre for a second consecutive year.
He’s also helped the IceCaps increase their community footprint with a number of grassroots marketing programs, and is also responsible for the team’s game operations.
Under Mullowney’s leadership, the IceCaps are one of the league’s leaders in social media, showing a 60 per cent growth in followers over the last year while incorporating unique corporate-partnership opportunities into their social promotions.
The award, first presented in 1978, honors Ken McKenzie, the founder and long-time publisher of The Hockey News and a 1997 media honoree by the Hockey Hall of Fame as the Elmer Ferguson Memorial Award winner.
The IceCaps’ chief operating officer, Glenn Stanford, won the McKenzie Award in 1996-97 when he held the same position with the St. John’s Maple Leafs. The Leafs’ director of communications at the time, Chris Schwartz, won the award in 2003-04.
The honour one of a number for the St. John’s front office has garnered recently.
At the AHL marketing meetings in Cleveland last month, the IceCaps won both the Sponsorship Sales Department of the Year Award and the Most Unique Sponsorship Package or Entitlement Award for the 2012-13 season.
The IceCaps were first in AHL cash sponsorship, recording 223 per cent growth in revenue related to promotional inventory. The sponsorship award, meanwhile, was for the team’s Turn Back the Tide campaign which promoted understanding of climate change and energy efficiency .
The club also was recognized with achievement awards for meeting or exceeding 15 per cent growth in corporate cash, a 90 per cent season ticket renewal rate, and new season ticket sales of 450 or more.
In fact, at the league board of governors meetings held earlier this month in Hilton Head, S.C., the IceCaps were honoured for the top sales sponsorship growth in the entire Eastern Conference.
“It’s recognition of the IceCaps of a whole,” said Stanford of the string of awards. “They represent not just the staff, but our season ticket holders, corporate partners and the entire community.
“Everyone can take satisfaction in that fact.”