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Semiahmoo Ravens’ executive director named to top BC Rugby post

Dave Newson to start new role as BC Rugby CEO on June 27
Former Semiahmoo minor hockey executive director Dave Newson has been named CEO of BC Rugby. (Don Wright photo/contributed photo)

The longtime executive director of the Semiahmoo Ravens minor hockey association has been tagged to take over the top job with BC Rugby.

On Thursday, the provincial rugby organization – which oversees all club and provincial-level aspects of the sport – announced that Dave Newson has been named its new chief executive officer. He takes over from departing CEO Annabel Kehoe, who announced in February that she was leaving the job and moving with her family back to Australia, where she is originally from.

Newson, who has been the executive director with Semiahmoo since 2014, will start his new position with BC Rugby on June 27, a news release states.

“I am extremely excited to work with the team at BC Rugby and help achieve our collective goal of growing the game. Rugby is in a great position to reach new heights and to make the game safer, more inclusive, and more accessible than ever,” Newson said in the release.

“I look forward to engaging and collaborating with the many diverse clubs that drive the game around the province, and meeting the thousands of dedicated people that help deliver such a high-quality sport experience for a growing membership.”

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In an email to Peace Arch News Thursday morning, Newson noted that he “will really miss Semiahmoo Hockey, but I will stay close to it as much as I can.”

Prior to his role with the hockey association, Newson worked for more than a decade at UBC as both the director of UBC Sports Community Program and as head coach/program manager for the women’s varsity hockey team. For two years, he was also the venue manager for ice hockey with the Vancouver 2010 Olympic committee.

In May 2021, Newson was named as one of two winners of the Pacific Coast Amateur Hockey Association’s President’s Service Award for his “significant contribution to PCAHA or amateur hockey in the Lower Mainland.”

In announcing Newson’s hiring, BC Rugby noted that he “has an accomplished track record leading sports organizations and brings over two decades of experience in senior leadership roles in sport, as well as extensive experience working at member-based organizations.”

“On behalf of the Board of Directors and our entire rugby community, I would like to welcome David as the new CEO of BC Rugby,” BC Rugby president Mark Lewis said in the release.

“We received applications from an impressive group of candidates and David’s skillset and expertise, combined with his impressive leadership experience, put him at the top of our list.”

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