The North Iowa Bulls have announced that Todd Sanden has been named the team's first head coach.
Sanden previously served as an assistant coach for the North Iowa Outlaws and Coulee Region Chill of the North American Hockey League. As a head coach, Sanden is a three-time Junior B national champion, was head coach of Dubuque of the United States Hockey League and is recognized as a tireless recruiter.
“We're very pleased to have someone with Todd’s experience and knowledge of North Iowa and Mason City as our head coach," said Gary Gelinas of Consolidated Sports, owners of the team. "Todd is respected in the hockey business and, just as important, in North Iowa.
"He knows many key people in Mason City and, with his past history of building championship teams, we know he'll bring a winner to North Iowa."
“I'm very excited to be returning to Mason City as the head coach of the North Iowa Bulls," said Sanden. "Mason City/Clear Lake and the entire surrounding community were tremendous in their support of me while I was here with the Outlaws and that makes coming back very easy.
"I want to thank the Coulee Region Chill/Outlaws for two very good years, especially the ownership group of Mark and Craig Motz, along with Dave Johnson, for the opportunity they provided me with two years ago.
"I appreciate the confidence of (Chill) head coach Garrett Strot in bringing me in as his assistant as well. A very special thanks to general manager Rick Wesp is necessary, too, as Rick has been a part of my hockey life for many years and I really enjoyed working with him and for him."
Sanden, from Anoka, Minn., and his wife, Teresa, have two children: Nick, 20, and Emily, 17.
"It's a great honor for me to be representing Consolidated Sports Group and the North Iowa Bulls as their head coach and I look forward to a very successful venture back in the area," Sanden added.
"The fans in the region are as passionate as any I've ever witnessed. This is a community that has a very strong junior hockey tradition and I'm sure the seats will be packed as we once again have a home team to cheer for.
"I'm excited and look forward to working with local sponsors and supporters of the Bulls in the very near future."