HARTFORD, April 11, 2013: The Connecticut Whale are proud to announce that Kelsey Tessier has been named the team’s winner of the IOA/American Specialty AHL Man of the Year award for his outstanding contributions to the Hartford community during the 2012-13 season.
This season Tessier was not only a huge part of the Whale’s annual events (the Special Olympics/CT Whale Bowl a Thon, and the Whale Winter Carnival), but he also spearheaded an event held early in the season to help raise money and awareness for the Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation of America. Tessier reached out to his teammates and was able to get eight other players to come out for the cause. The players took turns taking pictures and signing autographs, as they helped push donated auction items to help raise money to fight the disease.
During the holiday season Tessier jumped at the opportunity to meet and greet fans at a local mall and spread holiday cheer. While signing autographs and taking pictures, Kelsey took the time to talk to every single person that came through the door. Also, as an added bonus, he came armed with approximately 50 Whale game tickets to distribute.
Most recently Tessier arranged a visit to the Connecticut Children’s Medical Center. He got the word out to his teammates, who took time out of their day to visit the children who have been hospitalized. They brought two large bags of Whale gear, including autographed team posters, sunglasses, tickets, foam fingers and more.
Tessier is now one of 30 finalists for the AHL’s 2012-13 Yanick Dupre Memorial Award, honoring the overall IOA/American Specialty AHL Man of the Year. The league award is named after the former Hershey Bears forward and AHL All-Star who died in 1997 following a 16-month battle with leukemia. The winner of the Yanick Dupre Memorial Award will be announced by the American Hockey League on Apr. 18.