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hen Richard Smit gradu-
ated from Mount Allison in
1997, his passion was hockey.
The three-time Mounties' captain/assis-
tant captain and four-time Academic All-
Canadian has an honours degree in bio-
chemistry. It was unlikely he knew then
that his career of choice would see him
working with the very hockey heroes that
he idolized while playing minor hockey in
Bracebridge, On.
now in his eleventh year working with the
Toronto-based national Hockey League
Players' Association (nHLPA), Smit is
currently the Director of Finance and
Hockey Related Revenue (HRR), and
travels the continent representing some of
the world's greatest athletes.

After graduation the University's Senior
Scholar Athlete patrolled the blue line
in two pro leagues, first in Louisiana and
then in Germany, and following two
months of some thought-provoking back
packing trips, decided to consider alter-
nate career options. Back in Toronto he
secured a job at a small accounting firm.
With a propensity to work with numbers
he then landed a job with the nHLPA as
an accountant, and eventually received his
CGA (Certified General Accountant) des-
ignation in 2005. He became controller
and was shortly after promoted to Direc-
tor of Finance in 2008.

Smit feels very fortunate to work in the
game he loves and represent so many
hockey greats -- players whom he says
really are just well-grounded people. To
top it off, some of the perks include atten-
dance at nHL games and an opportunity
to meet some of his idols of old.

Speaking of his greatest experiences, Smit
says, "Working at the vancouver Olympics
and to be present at the gold medal hockey
game was something I'll never forget."

Smit also says he will never forget Mount
Allison. "I have great memories of all the
hockey guys and other athletes in our
Mountie family. We had fun but we also
learned to manage our time effectively
-- valuable lessons that I still rely on. We
balanced our schedules between practices,
games, academics, and social time. We
also learned to work alongside others who
were enrolled in different programs, had
diverse backgrounds, and offered different
views. These people and experiences really
helped shape my current outlook on life
and work."

Some of his most memorable moments as
a Hockey Mountie were the camaraderie
with teammates on and off the ice, his
selections to all-star games, and his invite
to play with the Atlantic All-Stars against
the Canadian Junior team.

Always a quiet leader with a tremendous
work ethic, Smit has worked his way to
the top of every opportunity that has
challenged him. But despite all of his
accomplishments, Smit is most proud of
becoming a father.

He and his wife Trish are now the proud
parents of 11-month-old Charlie. And for
Smit, there has been no better feeling.
by Sue Seaborn
featuRe stORy
To be present
at the gold
medal hockey
game was
something I'll
never forget
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