Oak View Group has named Steve Fraser as president of Coachella Valley Arena and its to-be-named American Hockey League expansion team that will be based in Palm Desert, California, as the top affiliate of the newest National Hockey League team, the Seattle Kraken.
Prior to joining OVG, Fraser served as vice president of business operations for the Ontario Reign, the AHL affiliate of the NHL’s Los Angeles Kings, where he oversaw all departments for the team. Over five seasons the team grew their season ticket memberships and received numerous awards and accolades from the AHL. The Reign hosted the 2020 AHL All-Star Classic, which brought $4.1M in economic impact to Ontario, California, and the surrounding communities.
“We are very pleased to welcome Steve to OVG and the Coachella Valley Arena team,” said Tim Leiweke, Oak View Group’s chief executive officer. “During his time with the Ontario Reign, Steve was instrumental in helping grow their organization and we know he’ll bring the same drive and passion to our franchise in the desert.”
Fraser will work alongside John Bolton, senior vice president of entertainment for facilities and general manager at Coachella Valley Arena, and Troy Bodie, director of hockey and business operations for Palm Springs at the Seattle Kraken, to build and execute a business plan focused on maximizing revenue and value to partners. He will oversee the day-to-day execution of season ticket campaigns, group sales, premium sales, and maximizing activation of the training center.
“I am ecstatic to join OVG for a once in a lifetime opportunity at such an exciting time in the company’s growth and to be a part of bringing a brand-new Arena and AHL hockey team to Coachella Valley,” Fraser said.
Fraser began his career in professional sports with the ECHL’s South Carolina Stingrays, working his way up to vice president after four seasons with the franchise.
“As we aspire to build out a brilliant AHL franchise we are fortunate to have Steve’s passion and experience at the helm,” said Kraken Chief Executive Officer Tod Leiweke. “The Seattle Kraken welcome Steve to the family and look forward to building something great for the Coachella Valley.”