March 23, 2018

At the EIHA EGM in November it was agreed that a Governance Working Party would be set up to help the EIHA decide on the best way forward for the governance structure of the sport.
The composition of the Governance Working Party has been finalised and the Group is beginning its consultation process.

Joining the two EIHA board representatives – Joy Johnston and Andrew Miller – are Jonathan Hall, an independent sports governance expert who has agreed to chair the Group and Eric Morton, one of the IHUK independent directors.

A further independent sports governance expert, Rod Findlay, has also agreed to act as a sounding board for the Group but is not playing a full member role in the Group. The other IHUK independent director, Martin Gill, was invited to join the Group but due to time commitments is unable to fulfil the role on a full time basis – the Group will however consult with him as part of the process. Further details on Jonathan Hall, Eric Morton and Rod Findlay are provided below.

The Group met recently to discuss how it would approach the project and it has agreed that it is important for there to be a consultation process to give people the opportunity to provide views on the best way forward and to help the Group understand the various issues at stake.

The Group will therefore be contacting a number of key people that have been involved in the issues to date, including at the EIHA, IHUK, SIHA and the EIHL. The Group would also be interested to hear from anyone else involved in the sport who wishes to offer their view on the governance structure of ice hockey in England and the UK.

Submissions should be made to along with your name and role/interest in the sport to help the Group understand your involvement. The deadline for any such submissions is 30 April 2018.

In addition, the Group plans to hold two open consultation forums at the end of April/start of May – one in the North of England and one in the South to give anyone interested a further opportunity to share their views on the governance of the sport. Further details will be provide shortly on the venues, dates and times for those two forums.

Following the consultation, the Group will report on its proposals to the EIHA Board at the end of Spring and then to an EIHA EGM as soon as reasonably possible after that.

Notes on the Working Group Members:

EIHA Governance Working Group: Jonathan Hall (Chair), Joy Johnston (EIHA), Andrew Miller (EIHA), Eric Morton (IHUK).

Jonathan Hall, Chair of the EIHA Governance Working Party, has over 20 years’ experience in sport ranging from senior leadership roles in two large national sports governing bodies, The FA and the Rugby Football Union, to the commercial world of IMG. He entered the sports world after training as a lawyer at Cambridge University and US law firm Baker McKenzie. He has first-hand experience of many of the key areas of running major sports governing bodies including the associated corporate and regulatory governance issues.

He was Company Secretary of the RFU in the early days of professional rugby when the game’s governance was having to modernize and he was Director of Governance and then Director of Football Services at the FA for 11 years where he was responsible for all regulatory and governance issues associated with clubs, leagues and the rest of the game in England and closely involved with the structural review of The FA by Lord Burns in 2005. More recently he has advised and helped British Judo lead its corporate governance changes and related compliance with the Code of Governance for UK Sports. He is currently a consultant on a wide range of issues in sport

Eric Morton, IHUK independent director on the Group, trained and qualified as an accountant and has spent much of his career in and around the NHS in senior financial and management roles, including 10 years as Chief Executive of Chesterfield Royal Hospital. During that role he was also seconded to other parts of the NHS to assist challenged healthcare providers. Since stepping down from that role in 2012, Eric has acted as interim chief executive of a couple of challenged NHS foundation trusts and also became an Improvement Director for Monitor which saw him provide support and act as a regulator presence in a number of foundation trusts which were in special measures.

His background has given him a strong understanding of governance requirements in the health sector. As well as being appointed as an independent director of IHUK in March 2017, having been a committed ice hockey fan for 25 years, Eric is currently Chairman of the Board of Nottingham University Hospitals.

Rod Findlay is Director of Strategy & Governance and Company Secretary at England Golf. His role involves the strategic and operational planning for the national governing body; all governance issues; and its legal and disciplinary functions. He regularly advises golf clubs and counties on legal and governance issues. Rod is also a Non-Executive Director at the Mountain Training Trust, which runs the National Mountain Sport Centre; an External Examiner at De Montford University on the sports law post-graduate courses; and a sessional Senior Lecturer at Northumbria University.

Rod qualified as a Solicitor in 1995 and specialised in medical law until 2005 before gaining further qualifications and wider industry experience via in-house legal roles, non-executive directorships and senior management positions, such as the Rugby Football League, Badminton England, Sport England and as CEO at two professional rugby league clubs. This includes all aspects of commercial law; governance and company law; corporate mergers and restructuring; litigation; compliance; risk management; data protection; HR; intellectual property; and strategy development and implementation.