Esso Hockey since 1936Legends Of Hockey
Esso Hockey since 1936
Griffiths, Frank

Griffiths, Frank

One of the most successful businessmen in the Pacific Northwest, Frank Griffiths brought plenty of hockey excitement to the Vancouver area. His passion for the game was rivaled only by his commitment to community endeavours. Griffiths earned the respect of his peers and was a highly visible member of the NHL administration.

Born in the Vancouver suburb of Burnaby, Griffiths studied at the British Columbia Institute of Chartered Accountants. After becoming a certified CA he joined his father's accounting firm. Over time he became fascinated by the emerging communications industry and eventually devoted much of his time to this pursuit.

He purchased the CKNW radio station in 1956 and eventually presided over the development of Western Canada International Communications Limited. This became Canada's largest publicly traded broadcasting company with interests in television, radio and satellite network services in central and western Canada. He was also the founder of Northwest Sports Enterprises Ltd. a founding investor in Canadian Satellite Communications Inc. (CanCom). Griffiths always made a point of building a public service component into each of his companies. These included the CKNW Orphans' Fund and the BCTV Variety Club Telethon.

On May 2, 1974, Griffiths stopped working as a CA and purchased the Vancouver Canucks of the NHL from the Minnesota-based Medical Investments Corporation. He immediately became active in the NHL utilizing his accounting expertise to serve on the league's Audit Committee. Griffiths consulted with several franchises experiencing short-term financial woes or wishing to improve their fiscal performance. Between 1979 and 1987 he was the vice-chairman of the NHL but was never in search of the limelight.

Griffiths was lauded by many for being a generous and efficient owner who preferred to divert attention or credit towards his hockey team. He was elected to the Hockey Hall of Fame in 1993.

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