Getting to know Jenny Potter


Jenny Potter has been very successful in her hockey career with appearances at the 1998, 2002, 2006 and 2010 Olympics, and added to the collection of medals won there with medals at the Women’s World Championships along with NCAA National Championships at University of Minnesota Duluth. Jenny has been a member of the Minnesota Whitecaps for seven seasons. She is a graduate of UMD with a degree in business management and is currently owner of Potter’s Pure Hockey and a mother of two.

Q: When and how did you hear about the Whitecaps?

JP: My dad was one of the founders and started the Whitecaps. It was always his dream to try and start an elite/pro level of women’s hockey. 

Q: Describe your experiences competing at the various Winter Olympics.

JP: Every Olympics is special and different in their own way. It’s an honor just to represent your country and then win an Olympic medal is something I will always cherish. I have formed many friendships and relationships with people from all around the world. I have met three different presidents and been a part of so many special events and occasions that I otherwise would not have been able to do. 

Q: What is your most memorable experience playing for the Whitecaps?

JP: I have several memorable moments with the Whitecaps, but I think the most memorable would be the Clarkson Cup in 2009. It was some of the best hockey games I have been a part of in my career.

Q: How do you manage your personal life along with training for hockey?

JP: Maintaining a balance between training, being a mother and providing for your family is very difficult. I have been very fortunate with help from my family. It’s very hard work and very challenging but I have been lucky to be able to have resources available to me, from outdoor rinks in Minnesota, to men’s leagues, to the Whitecaps. 

Q: What are some obstacles you have had to overcome?

JP: There will always be obstacles in life and I think it’s just another word for challenging situations. I think getting back in shape after my two kids was very difficult. Balancing a family life with a game I love and a dream I have had to play in the Olympics as a kid has sometimes made it difficult to make ends meet.  

Q: When you were younger, did you ever imagine competing around the world?

JP: I had a dream to someday compete in the Olympics but had no idea what or how it would manifest over the years. It has been a dream come true. Yes, there have been challenges, but I think that it was has made me a stronger and better person as well as player.

Q: Describe the job as a Pure Hockey instructor.

JP: My husband and I run a business called Potter’s Pure Hockey. Why the name? I wanted something that represents who we are, what we stand for and what we want to teach hockey players. It’s the best player you can be by being great at everything from defense to offense, backchecking to forechecking, passing to scoring and blocking shots. We run a summer training program from June through August for elite women’s hockey players, high school and youth. We also do private lessons with individuals or small groups. If interested, please visit our website for contact information.    

Q: If you could travel anywhere, where would you go and why?

JP: If I could travel anywhere I would want my family and I to go skiing anywhere that has big mountains. I had a great time in Vail, Colorado right after the 2010 Olympics and it was the first time my kids went skiing. By the second day they were going down black diamonds and having a great time. I love to do anything with my kids but especially anything active.

Q: Besides playing hockey what do you enjoy  and how do you spend your free time?

JP: When I am not playing hockey I am trying to get everything else I need to do done before the kids get home from school so I can spend time with them. Whether it is taking them to the outdoor park and skating or swimming.

Q: Who first introduced you to hockey?

JP: My dad introduced me to hockey. I grew up in Edina and we lived a couple blocks from Lewis Park. My sisters, mom, dad and I would go and skate in the winters pretty much every day. My dad would play with the big guys and I would always ask to play but he would say, “When you get bigger.”

Q: Do you have a quote that you live by?

JP: The quote I live by is “Character is who you are when no one is looking.”

Q: Playing at the most elite level, do you have a routine before going out on the ice?

JP: My routine before competing is a really good warm-up.

Q: Who is your role model?

JP: I have several role models; I always looked up to Wayne Gretzky and Neal Broten.