Legends of Hockey - 2000 Induction Showcase - Walter L. Bush, Jr.

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Walter L. Bush, Jr. – Builder Category

Walter L. Bush, Jr. The name Walter L. Bush Jr. is synonymous with the game of ice hockey in the United States. Bush was born in Minneapolis, Minnesota on September 25, 1929. He played amateur hockey in the United States for 22 years before hanging up his blades and turning his talents to the administrative side of the game.

Walter L. Bush, Jr. was named manager of the 1959 USA National Team along with being elected as a director to the Amateur Hockey Association of the United States (AHAUS) board that same year. He is also a member of the United States Olympic Committee.

Amateur or professional, Bush was involved in everything. He was part of the team that formed the United States Central Hockey League in 1955 and served as the league's President for three seasons. Bush was the former owner of the Minneapolis Bruins of the old Central Hockey League, a team that he also coached and managed and was instrumental in bringing the National Hockey League to the Twin Cities in 1967. As well, he assisted in merging the Cleveland Barons with the Minnesota North Stars in the late 1970's.

Walter L. Bush Jr., received the Lester Patrick Trophy in 1973, for outstanding service to hockey in the United States.

In 1986, Bush was named President of AHAUS, which is now known as USA Hockey and committed to further unite the various functions of hockey in the U.S. That same year, Bush was elected to the International Ice Hockey Federation Council and was later named Vice-President of the Federation in 1994.

Bush was also the first US born member of the Hockey Hall of Fame's Board of Directors, a position he has held since 1972, and is currently the chairman of the IIHF's Womens, In-line Hockey and Hall of Fame committees.

Once asked whether or not he would rather be involved with amateur of professional hockey, he commented, "My first love is hockey and I hate to say whether I preferred amateur or pro. Whatever I was most involved in at the time, I threw myself into it."

Joe Mullen | Denis Savard