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Center Ice Spotlight: James Poplaw | KC, Missouri

James Poplaw

My name is James Poplaw, and I was born in a small town in Missouri to immigrant parents. In my family, my mom hailed from Sri Lanka and my dad hailed from Montreal. During my childhood, my father took me on the ice to learn to skate, and I became excellent at it. At the age of five, I began participating in speed skating tournaments. At the age of eight, I switched to hockey. I have been playing for the past six years and I intend to continue playing as long as I can! Due to the lack of diversity in my local hockey community, I would like to be a brand ambassador for the HPOC. It is my goal to introduce this fun sport to children of all backgrounds. I would like to provide them with advice on how to begin - whether it is where to buy skates or which local programs to join. Having been selected as an HPOC ambassador, I am looking forward to watching kids succeed and thrive in a sport they never thought they would have the opportunity to participate in. One thing that many people are unaware of about me is that my Hebrew name is Barak, in honor of the president-elect who was elected the day before I was born on November 5, 2008. In the event that I were given the opportunity to have dinner with any hockey player, I would probably choose PK Subban. As a young teenager like myself, I would be very interested in learning about his experience playing hockey. In terms of the best advice I have ever received, I would have to tie it into one of my favorite quotes from Nelson Mandela, which is "I never lose, I either win or I learn." After each and every game, I have been inspired by these famous words from this great leader to remain positive. As a hockey player, my dream would be to practice continuously in order to qualify for a Division 1 program.

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