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AMBASSADOR SPOTLIGHT: Dana Timm | Southgate, Michigan

Meet Dana Timm!

Tell us about yourself!

Hey all! My name is Dana Timm and I am from Southgate, Michigan. I am a career firefighter/paramedic with a local city here and I also run my  own goalie coaching business called Advantedge Goaltending. You can connect with us on Instagram or Facebook if you would like! I aim to provide more affordable goalie coaching to primarily girls’ and women’s hockey teams around the Metro Detroit Area. We also occasionally run women’s hockey clinics with the goal of providing coaching both on and off-ice to female players. We plan to offer a free women’s hockey clinic this coming Fall aimed at providing a fun day of instruction for women that have not been able to get individual coaching in the sport yet.

I am very lucky to be able to recruit my friends to help me run clinics and when I would like an extra shooter out on the ice and most of us have played NCAA D3 hockey (many of us played together at Adrian College from 2007-10 in their first three seasons existing). I feel that a positive female role model and having female coaching available to girls from a young age can be a very valuable resource.

I have played goalie for the past 16 years from starting with boys Peewee hockey to working my way up to 19u Victory Honda and finally playing my collegiate career at Adrian College for their NCAA D3 women’s hockey team. Currently, I play for the women’s Honeybaked hockey team (we had a great run last year to win the Michigan State Tournament and placed second at the National Tournament).

In all of my years of playing hockey I have only had one full season with an actual goalie coach and no specific coaching in college. Since being a goalie is such a solitary role on the ice and it requires such a strong mental focus, not having a coach that you can talk to or that can breakdown technical errors or lessons with you can feel very isolating. Often times I have felt alone on an island left to figure it out for myself and as someone who strives for perfection and has been diagnosed with OCD, it can start to feel like you are unraveling if you have a bad game or two (OCD along with anxiety runs rampant throughout the goalie community.

Please check out Lift The Mask for amazing resources for yourself/teammates/players that you coach.

What made you want to be a WHL Brand Ambassador?

I wanted to be a WHL Brand Ambassador because hockey has always been my true passion and I feel very fortunate to be able to not only continue playing at a high level but to be able to coach and work with goalies of all ages/backgrounds/and walks of life. I am very excited to join this community and hope to keep fighting the good fight to get women’s hockey where it deserves to be and provide a bright future for every girl playing this amazing game.

What are you most looking forward to as a #WHLAMBASSADOR?

I am most looking forward to seeing the positive momentum that I think this community and everyone in it can create for the game that we love. I really look forward to seeing events come out our way near Detroit—we have such a hockey hotbed in terms of the amount of players and the love of the game here, but unfortunately the women’s pro leagues have yet to venture out our way for a team.

Any time that I have gotten the chance to watch the USA National team play the Canadian National team the atmosphere has been amazing and really unites all the local hockey teams from young players to ‘beer leaguer’. I would love to be a part of progressing towards more opportunities for the female players in Michigan and can not wait to meet other hockey supporters and players/coaches from all over.

What’s something not a lot of people know about you?

A lot of people don’t know that I was a competitive swimmer and did gymnastics for many years before I started playing hockey—I think that laid a great foundation for me as a goalie!

If you could sit down and have dinner with one female hockey player, who would it be and why?

If I could have dinner with one female hockey player it would have to be Shelley Looney. When I was in Jr High my gym teacher actually brought Shelley to our school (she had known her for years) and I remember how amazing it was to be able to meet her because she was playing this game that I was falling in love with at the Olympic level. She brought some of her medals (including the 98 Nagano gold) and let me see them and get her autograph.

Even thinking about it now over 15 years later still seems surreal. At the time it was my first year playing hockey and I was playing on a boys team and it was still odd for girls to be in the sport. I am excited for how far we have come since then but I know that we could do much better and there is work to be done still.

What’s the best advice you’ve ever been given in hockey or in life?

The best advice that I have ever been given is to enjoy each chance that you get to play.

“It’s a great day for hockey” is a quote that really sticks in my head. No matter what is going on outside of the rink, when you get to the ice you have the next hour or so to just focus on stopping the puck, having fun, and improving. I often refer to hockey as my form of meditation because usually I feel less stressed on the ice (even in a shoot-out) than anywhere else, which is very special to me since I work such a high stress job as a firefighter.

What’s your dream for women’s hockey?

My dream for women’s hockey would be that we can build a sustainable pro model and get support from the big men’s leagues to spread awareness and help to build a following for years to come. It really blows my mind that we have so many amazing women’s hockey players between Canada and the USA and yet we struggle to keep a five team league profitable, it just seems unbelievable. The problem is not the quality of hockey, the players, or the interest from fans of the game. I really believe that the problem is just a complete lack of knowledge and marketing to reach outside of the direct women’s hockey circle.

When the CWHL folded this past summer, I was amazed at how many people claimed to have never heard of it! I mean, I grew up dreaming of playing for one of those teams and so many of the comments and stories that were written were by people who were somehow unaware of the league’s existence to begin with.

I think that we can do better to try to broaden our reach and spread the word about the fact that we have the two hockey powerhouses in the world right under our noses and the most elite players in the world right here. These athletes deserve to be compensated and female hockey deserves to become a major sport with a major following, but in order to do that I think that everyone in this community and in the sport needs to support the game, the teams, and the opportunity to spread the word whenever possible.

Cheers to positive momentum and a bright future for our sport!


Interested in becoming a #WHLAmbassador?

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