Alignment of Elite Hockey in Alberta, beginning in 2024-25 Season

Hockey Alberta is excited to announce several changes to Elite Hockey in Alberta, in an effort to align elite hockey across the province, starting in the 2024-25 season.

To unify the Alberta Elite Hockey League (AEHL), Alberta Female Hockey League (AFHL) and AA Hockey, Hockey Alberta has formed an Elite Hockey Executive.

The Executive’s focus is to deliver a premier Elite Development pathway for families in Alberta, to continue to grow the profile of Elite Hockey in Alberta and ensure aligned operations between AA, AAA as well as both male and female hockey leagues.

The executive includes:

  • AEHL Commissioner, Aaron Rawlake
  • AEHL Chair, Devin Selte
  • AEHL Vice Chair, Lee Hellyer
  • AFHL Chair, Jody Forbes
  • AFHL Vice Chair, Lise Cote
  • AA Hockey Chair, Trevor Hittel

In addition to the Elite Hockey Executive, Hockey Alberta has announced the following expansion plans for the 2024-25 season:

  • U13, U15, U16 and U18 AA Hockey in Alberta operated by the AEHL, overseen by AA Hockey Chair, Trevor Hittel, and AEHL Commissioner, Aaron Rawlake.
  • A U13 AAA Pilot in Northern Alberta, operated by the AEHL.
  • The Alberta U11 AA Hockey League, operated by Hockey Alberta, culminating in awarding a Provincial Champion.

AEHL Expansion to AA Hockey

Hockey Alberta has been working alongside Minor Hockey Associations in the province, the Northern Alberta Hockey League, South Central Alberta Hockey League, Hockey Calgary AA League, and the AEHL over the last several months to unify the three pre-existing AA leagues under the AEHL.

“The expansion of the AEHL to include AA in the elite model is due to the collaboration and engagement of associations and members in the Hockey Alberta system,” Rawlake said. The AEHL is excited to welcome the AA stakeholders and players to the AEHL with a commitment to exceptional service. Hockey Alberta will continue to provide the premier destination for all levels of elite hockey in the province and we look forward to continuing work with our innovative partners to continue to grow our game.”

The AEHL is being led by Aaron Rawlake, Commissioner, Elite Hockey (AEHL and AFHL), with AA Division Operations being overseen by Trevor Hittel, Chair, AA hockey.

“Unifying AA hockey under the AEHL has been a priority of mine for years,” Hittel said. “We are thrilled to take these next steps to standardize AA league operations and work more closely with AAA divisions to continue to develop and promote AA players to AAA hockey.”

U13 AAA Pilot

The U13 AAA Pilot is being launched for the 2024-2025 season in Northern Alberta. This Pilot will provide valuable insight to Hockey Alberta in identifying the ideal structure required to provide this level of hockey to families across the entire province in the 2025-26 season. MHAs currently committed to participate in the Pilot are Hockey Edmonton (4 teams), Bonnyville, Fort McMurray, Grande Prairie, Leduc, Lloydminster, Sherwood Park, and St. Albert.

Teams will compete within the structure of the AEHL, which includes access to livestreaming and video analytics to enhance the player development experience at this level of hockey.

Families registered with an MHA that is hosting a U13 AAA team are to access tryouts with that team. Athletes registered outside of an MHA hosting a U13 AAA team are permitted to pursue a U13 AAA tryout with an MHA that is accepting tryout players. Once families have found an Association that is accepting tryout players, athletes from outside the Host MHA will need a ‘Notification to Tryout’ form.

For more information on individual programs and tryouts, please contact the Host Associations for more details.

U11 AA

For the past two seasons, Hockey Alberta has worked with our Minor Hockey Leagues to operate the U11 HADP within Alberta. Hockey Alberta has decided to create the category of U11 AA, officially, for 2024-25 and beyond.

Teams within the U11 AA will play in the newly formed Alberta U11 AA Hockey League. The inaugural season of U11 AA will begin in October and the 48 participating teams will compete in regional play throughout the season with the season culminating in playoffs and a Provincial Tournament.

Please refer to Information Bulletin 23-11 for more information regarding the alignment and league operations.

Bulletin 23-11 >