Wooooooo the Philadelphia Flyers are back in the playoff hunt, as they are only four points back of the last wild card spot in the Eastern Conference. With having off until Thursday after the Christmas break, this gave some fans sometime to sing Christmas carols. While other fans finally had some time for much needed R&R. Some people that go unnoticed behind the scenes of the Flyers organization are the PR Communication Staff. These men and women work their tails off behind the scenes. With the new year less than a week away now is a good time to honor these folks.
The Flyers PR Staff is lead by a bull dog in Zack Hill. Hill is the Senior Director of Communications. He has quietly guided the Flyers PR Staff to two Dillman Awards in the past ten years. The first was in 2012, as the PR Staff was given the Dillman Award for their excellence in media relations departments in both conferences, and the second Dillman Award was awarded in the 2014-15 season from the Eastern Conference.
Hill graduated from West Virginia, where he obtained a Bachelor’s Degree of Science. He became an elementary school teacher, but left the career after pursuing his Master’s degree in journalism. He was fortunate to work for the Philadelphia 76ers as an intern, and they eventually promoted Hill to the Director of Public Relations position.
The guru in Hill left the 76ers organization to join the Flyers organization in 1993. Hill hasn’t looked back as he handles all media relations requests, attends practices, lines up press credentials, preps game notes, photographs at times (Like a great photographer Kate Frese does), comforts players, and makes players available to media. Moreover, Hill is a busy bee that never stops working, as he does his job very well.
Siville is a business guru that knows how to relate with others. He holds a dual Bachelor’s in Journalism and History from Rutgers University. Moreover, his fortunes took him to the ECHL, where Siville became an assistant director of communications.
The good fortunes in Siville took him to the AHL where he became manager of communications. Siville joined the Flyers in 2006, and hasn’t looked back. He is Zack Hill’s right hand man, as Siville takes part in the Coach’s press conferences/Players locker room, handles media requests, and anything that Hill needs him to fulfill. Siville is often over heard in the Hakstol’s press conference to the media saying, “Last question.”
Smith joined the Flyers organization in 2009, after successfully handling PR duties for the Philadelphia Phantoms. He came to the Phantoms with tons of experience, after handling PR duties for the Kalamzoo Wings.
His primary duties with the Flyers are handling media credentials, game notes, press releases/publications, and the press box operations. Smith works side by side with Siville and Hill to make their jobs that much easier. Sometimes Smith can be seen greeting those that enter the players locker room.
Mcdonald is a video guru. He is a video coordinator, as he operates the video editing software on the computer during games. More importantly, he secures all opponents films and loads them onto computers, assists staff with post game cut ups, and provides motivational videos or clips to the the team throughout the season. If this isn’t enough Mcdonald handles PR matters as needed.
The Flyers PR Communication Staff deserves a ton of kudos for all their hard work throughout the season. Without them we wouldn’t be enjoying some of these things, that some of us don’t think about when covering Flyers games. Here’s a big thank you for all you do. Have a great and safe New Year.
Mandatory Credit: Russell LaBounty-USA TODAY Sports