Flames executive Ken King dead at 68

Calgary Flames executive Ken King has died. He was 68.

King, from Hanley, Sask., was vice-chair and chief executive officer of Calgary Sports and Entertainment Corporation, which owns the Flames.

King became president and CEO of the NHL team in 2001 after three decades as a newspaper executive.

He was the public voice of the Flames’ ownership group comprised of Murray Edwards, Alvin Libin, Allan Markin, Jeff McCaig and the late Clayton Riddell.

When the team’s business intersected with the city’s — as was the case in negotiations for a new NHL arena — King’s comments reflected the position of the owners.

He and Calgary mayor Naheed Nenshi were thus the central figures in those negotiations, which created strife between the team and city council before the two sides came to an agreement in 2019.

“Ken was the right leader at the right time for CSEC. His leadership and passion was exhibited every day in his successful delivery of the new Calgary event centre,” CSEC chairman and co-owner Murray Edwards said in a statement. ”He was a trusted confidant to all of the Flames owners, both past and present, and we all learned so much from him. My partners and I will miss our frequent conversations with our dear friend.”

King oversaw the quick reclamation of the Saddledome following the 2013 spring flood that submerged everything in the building below row eight.

The arena was ready, however, for Flames’ pre-season games that September.

“His vision and steady hand have been instrumental in the success of both the Flames and the Calgary Hitmen of the WHL. And his staunch advocacy for the arena project that will guarantee the Flames’ long-term viability in Calgary will serve as a legacy of his devotion to the city,” NHL commissioner Gary Bettman said. “Ken was a friend and I will miss him greatly. My sincere condolences go out to his family.”

Prior to joining the Flames, King was publisher of both the Calgary Sun and Calgary Herald, as well as a manager for the Toronto Sun and United Press Canada.

He received honorary degrees from the University of Calgary in 2012 and Mount Royal University in 2014.

King is survived by his wife Marilyn, two daughters and four grandchildren.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Parliament may need to be recalled again to approve wage subsidy program

OTTAWA — Canadians are supposed to get more details today of the… Continue reading

A message from the Advocate publisher

In good times and bad, The Red Deer Advocate has been here… Continue reading

US death toll eclipses China’s as reinforcements head to NYC

NEW YORK — The U.S. death toll from the coronavirus climbed past… Continue reading

Long john producer Stanfield’s reacts to COVID-19 with ‘pivot’ to medical gowns

HALIFAX — A historic Canadian undergarment factory famed for long johns and… Continue reading

The latest numbers on COVID-19 in Canada

The latest numbers of confirmed and presumptive COVID-19 cases in Canada as… Continue reading

WATCH: Firefighters, RCMP help Red Deer boy celebrate 3rd birthday

Firefighters and RCMP officers helped a Red Deer boy celebrate his third… Continue reading

Alberta Health Services provides COVID-19 prevention tips

Alberta Health Services has a number of recommendations for people amid the… Continue reading

Alberta government website has latest COVID-19 statistics

Red Deer Advocate readers can stay up to date on the COVID-19… Continue reading

Need a laugh? SiriusXM launches channel for female comics

NEW YORK — The midst of a global pandemic might seem like… Continue reading

A message from Waskasoo Medical Clinic

A Message From Waskasoo Medical Clinic Waskasoo Medical Clinic (including our walk-in… Continue reading

Alberta’s energy war room to spend only on ‘subsistence operations’ due to COVID-19

Alberta’s energy war room to spend only on ‘subsistence operations’ due to COVID-19

Father of Humboldt Bronco disappointed Saskatchewan has relaxed trucking rules

Father of Humboldt Bronco disappointed Saskatchewan has relaxed trucking rules

Alberta education minister resists Opposition calls to rescind mass layoffs

Alberta education minister resists Opposition calls to rescind mass layoffs

Alberta Medical Association calls health-care changes irresponsible during pandemic

Alberta Medical Association calls health-care changes irresponsible during pandemic

Most Read