A local familiar face is among those who will soon be honoured as provincial sports heroes.
Bryan Lewis - a long-time NHL referee and former Halton Hills councillor - has been selected for induction into the Ontario Sports Hall of Fame class of 2023.
After learning of this recognition yesterday (Feb. 6), the rural resident offered his congratulations to the other inductees - including Stanley Cup champion Brendan Shanahan - and thanked Hall of Fame president and CEO Mark Gravett and its board of directors.
“To the many leagues I have been associated with during my career, I also offer a sincere appreciation for their support and guidance,” he said.
“I’m pleased to be a member of the Ontario Sports Hall of Fame in the 29th year of such honours being extended to Ontarians.”
He noted that he’s joining nearly 50 other hall of famers from the sport of hockey, including one other official - Red Storey.
For 66 years and counting, Lewis said he’s been “wearing or caring about those wearing a striped shirt.”
His officiating career started in the Georgetown Legion Minor Hockey program. By the 1967-1968 season, he made it to the NHL.
Over the course of his career, he officiated more than 1,000 games, 30 playoff games and nine Stanley Cup finals at the NHL level.
He was named the Director of Officiating in 1989 - a role he held until 2000 that saw him oversee officiating needs and discipline in the NHL, AHL, ECHL, CHL and OUA men’s hockey.
Outside the rink, local residents will recognize Lewis for his 22 years spent serving as a Halton Hills councillor.
The Ontario Sports Hall of Fame induction ceremony and community celebration will be held on October 26 at The Carlu in Toronto.