Bill Robertson has been named the 10th president and commissioner of the United States Hockey League.
Robertson has been the president and commissioner of the men's league of the Western Collegiate Hockey Association the last seven seasons. The WCHA men's league has been disbanded after seven teams left to form the Central Collegiate Hockey Association, which will play its first season in 2021-22.
Robertson was approved by the USHL Board of Governors to take over the position on Thursday afternoon. He replaces Tom Garrity, who has served in the position since November 2017. Robertson will begin his new position on July 12.
"I've known and worked with Bill for 20 years and am confident in saying the USHL is in great hands with Bill taking over," Garrity said in a news release. "We had a lot of fantastic candidates for the position, but we feel Bill's experience in the sport will help continue to grow the league's pedigree as one of the best junior hockey leagues in the world."
Robertson, who is from St. Paul, brought WCHA playoff games back onto campuses, introduced 3-on-3 overtime and shootouts to WCHA regular season games for the first time.
"I'm honored to serve as the president and commissioner of the USHL," Robertson said in the news release. "As the only Tier I junior hockey league in the United States, the USHL stands as the top development league for the sport of hockey in the country. I'm excited to work with our owners, team executives, general managers, coaches and the individual markets that support this great league as we continue to raise our profile and grow the USHL."
Prior to working for the WCHA, Robertson was part of the inception of the Mighty Ducks of Anaheim (NHL), Minnesota Wild (NHL), Minnesota Timberwolves (NBA) and Minnesota Swarm (MLL). He also worked for Xcel Energy Center, Target Center, Arrowhead Pond of Anaheim and Edison International Field.
From 1998-2011, Robertson served as the vice president of communications and broadcasting for the Minnesota Wild and Minnesota Sports & Entertainment. He helped establish the franchise and events it hosted while leading the media relations, community relations, publications and broadcasting departments.
While with the Wild, Robertson and his staff won the Dick Dillman Award, which is given to the NHL’s top public relations staff, for their efforts during the 2005-06 season. In 2003, The Hockey News named the Minnesota Wild as the NHL’s best media relations department. In 2000, Robertson was named one of the “100 People to Watch” in Minnesota (Minneapolis/Saint Paul Magazine) and named to the area’s “40 Under 40” (Twin Cities Business Journal).
Prior to working with the Wild, Robertson served as the director of communications for The Walt Disney Company (1993-98), leading communications efforts for the Mighty Ducks and Anaheim Angels (MLB). Robertson also served in the same role with the Timberwolves (1989-93). While with the Ducks, Robertson’s staff won the Dick Dillman Award in four-straight seasons (1994-97).
Robertson’s experience in hockey also includes strategic planning and serving as the main liaison for the 2004 NHL All-Star Weekend, 2004 World Cup of Hockey, and 2011 NHL Draft as well as serving as media relations liaison for the men’s and women’s Team USA Olympic ice hockey teams in 2002 and 2006.
Robertson is the father of Brett and Brooke and the son of late Norbert Robertson who played hockey collegiately at University of Minnesota and University of St. Thomas. Mike, Robertson’s older brother, played college hockey for Boston College.