For Immediate Release
Powassan Voodoos Hockey Club
POWASSAN- Thursday October 22nd, 2014
The locally owned and operated Powassan Voodoos hockey club competes in the Northern Ontario Junior Hockey League (“NOJHL”) based out of the Powassan Sportsplex. More than 26 home games will be held in Powassan bringing in bus loads of people from throughout Northern Ontario spending both money and time in Powassan. We pride ourselves on the partnership we have made with the Municipality of Powassan and hope to continue this partnership for years to come.
A lease was completed between the Voodoos and the Municipality of Powassan August 20th, 2014 in what was hoped to be the beginning of a good relationship between the two entities.
Shortly after a lease was concluded between the Voodoos and the Municipality of Powassan, Deputy Mayor Todd White began a negative publicity campaign aimed against the Powassan Voodoos Hockey club and in particular, against co-owner, James Donald Bruce. Deputy Mayor White disseminated several disparaging verbal and written statements about Mr. Bruce and alleged that the Voodoos hockey club was run by convicted criminals…and that Mr. Bruce had had committed crimes of fraud and embezzlement. Deputy Mayor White inappropriately suggested that Mayor McIsaac was dealing with “convicts” – referring to Mr. Bruce.
Without reaching out to any member of the Voodoos organization to ask or discuss such a serious allegation, Deputy Mayor White put it upon himself to contact the technical & education director of NOJHL asking if the league conducted criminal record checks of its owners. Deputy Mayor White stated that one of the owners had something. He was directed to the NOHA website speak out policy or to contact the commissioner of the NOJHL Robert Mazzuca directly. Needless to say, the actions and statements made by Deputy Mayor White caused serious harm and damage to the reputation of Mr. Bruce but also a loss of credibility for the Voodoos Hockey club.
Deputy Mayor White failed to properly complete his research and recklessly concluded that co-owner Mr. Bruce was a convicted criminal. Had he fully researched the matter, he would have learned that there was in fact another by the same name and similar age who was convicted of the crimes — and not one and the same person as co-owner James Donald Bruce.
Deputy Mayor White has defamed co-owner Mr. Bruce and should have ensured the accuracy of his statements prior to commenting publically.