Bertagna Contract Extended by American Hockey Coaches Association
Longtime Executive Director to Serve One More Year in Current Post
The American Hockey Coaches Association has extended its agreement with Joe Bertagna, AHCA Executive Director since the position was created in 1991. Bertagna will serve in his current position through June of 2024 before assuming the title of Media Relations Director in 2024-25. A search for a new Executive Director for the 2024-25 season will begin during 2023.
“Joe is a great ambassador for college hockey and has a fantastic working relationship with the NCAA,” said Grant Potulny, AHCA President and head coach at Northern Michigan University. “His leadership in the role as Executive Director has given the AHCA and its members stability and confidence for over more than thirty years, none more important than over the past four years. We are looking forward to Joe continuing to guide the AHCA through 2024 and transition his successor into the 2024-2025 season.”
The AHCA has grown during Bertagna’s time as the only administrator it has ever had. The AHCA membership has increased and become more diverse during his tenure and working with the Board and other officers, the AHCA has come back strong since the pandemic challenged the organization a few years back.
“I am very appreciative that the AHCA Board is allowing me to continue serving the coaches,” said Bertagna. “I am particularly pleased that I will be able to transition to a different role in 2024 and I look forward to working alongside a successor.”
Bertagna has enjoyed a unique career in hockey as a player, coach, administrator, and journalist. With this extended agreement, Bertagna will celebrate 50 years in college hockey during the 2024-25 season: four as a player, three as a coach and 43 as an administrator.
A 1973 graduate of Harvard where he played goal for coaches Cooney Weiland and Bill Cleary, Bertagna enjoyed a brief professional career before starting work as a coach and administrator. He was the first coach of Harvard Women’s Hockey and launched a goalie coach career at the same time, peaking with six years with the Boston Bruins from 1985-1991. His summer goalie school will celebrate its 50th year next summer.
He has been a conference commissioner for 40 years, serving 38 years in college hockey, between the ECAC and Hockey East, and he is currently in his second year as commissioner of the Eastern Hockey League, a junior league operating in the East. A former broadcaster and freelance writer, Bertagna self-published a memoir, “Late in the Third,” in the summer of 2021. He also serves college hockey as the Secretary-Treasurer of the Hockey Commissioners Association.