The NWHL announced today that Kate Whitman Annis was named the Metropolitan Riveters general manager.
Whitman Annis was the assistant coach of the Riveters last season, working under first-year coach Randy Velischek.
“I am honored and excited to be able to continue my relationship with the NWHL as the Riveters’ general manager,” said Whitman Annis in a league release. “Putting my business background to use to advance the game for girls and women around the world is a lifelong dream of mine. I am looking forward to working with the players and the league to make the NWHL’s fifth season a success.”
A former hockey player, Whitman Annis has coached at nearly every level of the game, from youth to varsity high school to the professional level. She also has an MBA.
Whitman Annis will be the fifth female general manager in league history. Former female general managers include Linda Mroz (Buffalo Beauts, 2015-16), Dani Rylan (New York Riveters, 2015-16), Lisa Giovanelli (Connecticut Whale, 2016-17), and Hayley Moore (Boston Pride, 2015-17).
The league also announced that all teams will have a general manager this season. They will be responsible for “overseeing team operations, player personnel, and event management” as well as the hiring of team staff, including coaches.
The NWHL had general managers for each team in the first two seasons. However, starting in 2017-18, the league-owned teams have not had official general managers.
The Buffalo Beauts, who are owned by Pegula Sports and Entertainment, do have a general manager. Nik Fattey was the Beauts general manager before resigning from PSE in early January. The Buffalo News soon broke that he left after an internal investigation of sexual harassment of female employees. He was replaced by Cody McCormick, who was also the team’s head coach.
The NWHL’s free agency period will start in May. With two new teams in Canada potentially joining the league, all players who skated in the NWHL last season will be unrestricted free agents and free to sign where they choose.