Chris Slater a Level 5 USA Hockey Coach and Graduate of Western Michigan University; currently serves as the Director of the MICHIGAN ELITE BRIGADE. The Brigade has competed out of Metro Detroit as an Elite High School Hockey program for the past nine seasons. Coach Slater previously spent three seasons as the Head Coach of the Midget Major AAA Detroit Falcons; members of the North American Prospects Hockey League.
Coach Slater spent two seasons as the head coach of the Western Michigan University "Stallions" a Division 1 member of the American Collegiate Hockey Association. Slater guided the 2008-9 "Stallions" to their first ACHA Division 1 National Tournament appearance. Formerly the Coaching Director of the Battle Creek Youth Hockey Association; Chris also served as the Michigan Director for Robby Glantz Power Skating, INC.
A 2004 East Coast Hockey League Champion as a member of the Idaho Steelheads, Chris was selected to the ECHL all-star team in 2001 and attended the Detroit Red Wings training camp later that same year. During his 7 year professional career, “Slats” also had stops in the American Hockey League, British Super League and English Elite League. A competitive college defenseman at Michigan State University, the two time United States Olympic Festival participant was voted to the CCHA all-tournament team in 1995. During his time at Michigan State Slater was honorable mention for the CCHA all-rookie team and a three year pre-season all-american candidate in the American Hockey Coaches Association poll.
Before joining the college ranks Chris was a 3 year veteran for the Kalamazoo Jr. K-Wings member of the North American Hockey League which was then a Tier 1 Junior A league. During his time with the K-Wings Slater was a 2 time Robertson Cup Champion, 2 time 1st team All-Star, and Defenseman of the year. During this time Coach Slater also represented the United States on the National 16 and 17 teams; competing in many international competitions worldwide.
Peter Slater a level 5 USA Coach was the former President of the West Michigan Warriors AAA organization that is now defunct. The Warriors were members of the Michigan National Hockey League the top Tier 1 AAA league in the United States. The West Michigan Warriors produced many professional and college players during the course of the programs existence.
Peter previously coached in the IHL with the Kalamazoo Wings which was then an affiliate of the Detroit Red Wings. Coach Slater Sr. also coached in the United States Hockey League for Traverse City when the league was a professional league in the Midwest. The USHL is now the premier tier 1 Junior A Hockey League in the U.S.
Coach Slater played professionally for six seasons in the WHL, IHL, and CHL. During the apex of Peter's career he played for the Los Angeles Sharks of the World Hockey Association. The WHA was then on par with the NHL and enticed stars such as Gordie Howe, Bobby Hull, and Wayne Gretzky to sign contracts with teams in the league. After two seasons in L.A. Peter was traded to the St. Louis Blues of the NHL before being assigned to Denver; their affiliate team in the Central Hockey League. Before turning pro coach Slater Sr. played at St. Lawrence University D1 NCAA on a scholarship.
Richard Keyes Son of former Wings Stadium manager, Dick Keyes, Richard grew up a rink rat watching the K-Wings. He played his U8 youth hockey with Kalamazoo Optimist Hockey Association. Richard moved on to AAA organizations such as the Grand Rapids Whalers and the West Michigan Warriors programs. He progressed to the Michigan Nationals AAA hockey program out of Detroit and played in the top league in the country as an underage.
Richard gained national/international attention playing for the Kalamazoo Jr. K-Wings a the age of 16. He became the leading goal scorer and point getter in Tier I Junior A hockey in America. He is still the all time leading scorer in the NAJHL. He played on the USA National team in 1992. He was voted Michigan’s hockey player of the year, Junior hockey player of the year, and voted runner up for the U.S.A. Hockey player of the year in 1994. His achievements helped him attain a full ride scholarship to Michigan State University and on to a 9-year professional playing career.
Jason Desloover is one of the most skilled Hockey players to come out of the Great Lakes Bay Region. Jason grew up in Saginaw and is a Heritage High Graduate, class of 1992. He was recruited by several Universities while playing for the Saginaw Gears of the North American Junior Hockey League (NAJHL), where he earned All-Star status 2 times. Jason went on to play for Plattsburgh State University of New York, earning a Bachelor’s degree in Environmental Science. As a Cardinal Jason earned,1st Team All-American Honors in 1997 and was nominated to the All-Tournament team 4 years. After his senior year, Jason made the jump to the professional ranks, playing in the ECHL, WPHL and finishing up in the CHL. Jason went on to play in over 250 games at this level, retiring in 2002. Jason did not leave the hockey world, he immersed himself even deeper. By taking on several roles on the opposite side that he was accustomed to. In his first year after retiring he founded and was Director of the Outback Steakhouse Jr. Gorilla’s youth hockey league in Amarillo, TX., Jason also held the titles, Director of Ice Operation’s, Head Equipment manager and Hockey Development coach for the Amarillo Gorilla’s. He has been a collegiate assistant coach and head coach for two prestigious universities. For the past 20 years Jason has been developing players of all levels. Jason currently coaches, develops, trains, advises and mentors players in the Great Lake’s Saginaw Bay region.
Dennis Gagnon Mildord HS head Coach is a 1985 graduate of Michigan State University and lifelong goaltender and student of the game, grew up playing travel hockey in the Metro Detroit area before playing for Livonia Franklin High School his senior year. He founded and backstopped the State Utility (Detroit) Raiders, a four time USA Hockey Men's Senior Open Full Check National Champion, in 1986. Gagnon has coached his alma mater, Franklin, the past four seasons. He was awarded the 2014/15 MHSHCA D2 Coach of the Year by a vote of his peers. He is part of the Team Metro West coaching staff, the Meijer State Games 2015 Champion, going into his third season and has been an evaluator at Team Michigan tryouts the past two years. Prior to taking over at Franklin, Gagnon was an assistant working with the goalies and defense for the CSHL Junior A Michigan Ice Dogs and was part of the staff that started the Novi High School program in 2000.
John O’Leary Ann Arbor Huron HS Head Coach is a Level 5 USA Hockey Coach with over 20 years coaching experience; including Junior A and AAA. Coach O’Leary lead the Novi Prep Team for 9 seasons and won the State Championship with them. John’s playing experience includes the Detroit Jr Redwing Jr A, and youth AAA. He has been a sponsor of the O'Leary Hawks woman's hockey teams winning numerous state and national championships for over 20 years. Currently John owns the John O'Leary Insurance Agency Inc. (State Farm) www.johnolearyinsrance.com. for 26 years.
Coach Paul (Fozz) Fassbender is beginning his second season with the Saline HS Hornets. Looking forward to continuing to build on last seasons
successful run to the Division II Semi Finals. Coach Fozz grew up in Marquette Mi. Playing Hockey since the age of 3. Paul played AAA and the HS in Marquette. After graduation Paul joins the US
After his 4 years in the Marine Corps coach Fozz enrolled at Eastern Michigan university. Played 4 years of ACHA College Hockey then turned to coaching. Spent 3 years as an Assistant at EMU before taking the Head Coaching duties. Coach Fozz spent another 5 years as the eagles head coach. Before stepping down at the end of the 2005 season. After taking a year off HS Hockey came calling. Coaching the next 8 seasons in HS Hockey. Went to be an Assistant coach for one season at Compuware Midget Majors. Then joining the Saline Hornets High School program.
Paul works as a Facility Manager at USA Hockey Arena. Is married to Cynthia, a High School Language Arts teacher of 19 years. They have 2 children, Michael (14) and Elliana (12).
Todd Stienmetz is the current Varsity Head Coach of Carlson High School in the South East Metro Detroit area. Todd played in the USHL for the Waterloo Blackhawks before earning a athletic scholorship to Ferris State University. Stienmetz was a four year NCAA Division 1 player at FSU before turning pro and playing two seasons in the East Coast Hockey League.