Our Story

Growing up playing hockey, Ryno received assistance from numerous avenues helping him to continue playing up through NCAA. From youth hockey association scholarships to rides from coaches and other families for out-of-town games, from his junior hockey billet family’s support through gym expenses and a car to get around during the offseason to Coach Mike Murphy’s assistance that enabled Ryno to play out his last two seasons of junior hockey, Ryno set out to create a way for all of us to give back and pay it forward to the game we all love.

In 2016, what would become Seattle Youth Hockey Assist (SYHA) began as a simple golf tournament Ryno set up to help out one local hockey family. After a couple years of seeing the potential to give back to the greater hockey community, on February 23rd, 2018 Ryno founded SYHA as his official charity foundation. The tournament has continued to grow over the years to where SYHA is able to assist more than 10 kids each year in their pursuit of playing hockey.

SYHA not only offers financial assistance to youth and junior hockey players in need, starting in 2019, SYHA began free skills clinics for kids ages 6-13. The next steps in growth have multiple facets including a mentorship program, new events and activities, and expanding our corporate sponsorships to get more of our community involved.

With the help of fellow hockey buddies, Mike Ringstad and Olen Anderson, who are both also passionate about giving back to the game they grew up playing, SYHA is working to provide an assist to families in need, as well as helping to improve and grow hockey in the greater Seattle Area.

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Founder/Executive Director: Ryno Linder

Growing up in Bothell, Ryno played his youth hockey at Sno-King. At 15 he began his juniors with the Seattle Totems before moving to Spokane to play for the Spokane Braves. After a few seasons in Spokane and some stints in various other junior programs, he came back to finish juniors where it started, with the Totems. Ryno then played four years at MSOE while earning the All-Freshman Team award and multiple Academic All-American awards in the MCHA conference of NCAA Div III.

Following graduation, Ryno began working at Boeing and also spent time coaching Peewee AAA, Bantam AAA, and the Seattle Totems before going back to school to get his MBA. Ryno knew he wanted to begin to pay it forward for all the help he received over his playing time…especially the financial assistance. This was when the first year of the golf tournament began…after the initial success, all he wanted to do was find a way to make it bigger, better, and capable of helping more kids.

With their own little hockey player now, Ryno and his wife, Danica, are looking forward to continuing the success of SYHA for future generations.

Vice President: Olen Anderson

Hockey has always been a transformative sport for Olen growing up in the Seattle hockey community. Playing for Seattle Sno-King and SJHA in his youth then the Washington Totems, the hockey community helped show him that life is a team sport. His vision for his own future was greatly influenced by inspirational coaches and supportive family and players that surrounded him.

Joining his longtime teammate and friend, Ryno, and the SYHA team in 2018 was a great way for him to give back to the next generation of Washington hockey players. In 2010, Olen took his passion of helping youth find meaningful careers to the next level and founded his own company called “Experience,” which helps young people take control of their futures and create upward mobility for their families. Olen is committed to growing the next wave of hockey players and supporting their families through our dedicated community of sponsors who have given so much to our SYHA families.

Board Member: Michael Ringstad

Mike grew up in Snohomish and played his youth hockey at Seattle Junior Hockey Association (SJHA). He played at SJHA until he left for juniors in Montana at the beginning of his senior year of high school. Following juniors, Mike played for the Washington State University club hockey program for 4 years. After graduating college, Mike began coaching the SJHA Bantam AA team for 4 years. Having been around hockey his entire life, he knows how expensive hockey can be and also knows all of the benefits it brings. Mike is excited to be able to give back to the game that has given him so much.

Board Member: Robert Evers

Born and raised in the Lynnwood/Everett area, Robert was always was into sports, mainly watching hockey and football. Upon graduating high school, Robert attended college at MSOE where he also worked all sporting events. During this time, Robert also picked up playing floor hockey where he played both as a goalie and defensemen. While working the events, hockey was one sport Robert truly enjoyed. This led to meeting Ryno where they became close friends.

After graduating college, Robert continued his passion for hockey by becoming a season ticket holder for the Silvertips. Around 2019, he returned to the game of hockey as a player and shortly switched to goalie with a roller hockey group based out of Forest Park in Everett. With his passion of hockey growing, Robert made the choice to pick up playing goalie for an ice hockey team, currently play for the Scrooge McPucks in the Kraken Adult Hockey League.

Seattle Youth Hockey Assist (SYHA) is a nonprofit corporation, incorporated in 2018, and is not directly associated with any individual youth hockey association. SYHA partners with local associations to assist families in need.

Donations, registrations, raffle purchases, auction purchases, and Sponsorships are tax deductible per IRS guidelines. Please discuss with your tax professional.

Seattle Youth Hockey Assist is a Washington state nonprofit and a federal 501(c)(3) organization.

Federal EIN: 82-4658274