Damara Allen remembers a time when Airdrie had only one female hockey team.

It was growing up playing in that environment that led her to become passionate about getting more girls on the ice.

As female player co-ordinator at the Airdrie Minor Hockey Association (AMHA), it’s her job to help foster the development of young women in hockey.

“I want to make sure that girls continue to play girls’ hockey because there was a time that just wasn’t possible,” says Allen, who assistant-coaches the U11 female team.

“There’s a high number of females who drop out of sports. My goal is ensuring that girls have somewhere to play, but also somewhere where they can grow and learn life skills like building relationships on your hockey team.

“Win or lose, just seeing the growth of the female is important to me,” Allen says.

Nominator Mumtaz Robson is on the board with Allen at the AMHA. She says Allen has really stepped up to help support girls over the years.

“As a coach, she is always putting these young girls first and helping them find their passion and love for the game,” says Robson.

“I could not ask for a better person who understands the game and kids to lead the charge.”