Nicholson was Hockey Canada’s President and CEO from 1998 to 2014. He managed a staff of 95 people within five offices across Canada and oversees all operations for competitions that Canada participates in internationally, including in the IIHF Ice Hockey World Championship program and Olympic Winter Games. He was senior vice-president of the Canadian Hockey Association from 1992 to 1998 and vice-president of programs with the Canadian Amateur Hockey Association from 1990 to 1991.
Before joining the national body, Nicholson was technical director with the British Columbia Amateur Hockey Association from 1979 to 1989. He was inducted into the B.C. Hockey Hall of Fame in 2004 and received the City of Penticton’s 55 Award for having brought recognition to the Penticton area through hockey. He played minor hockey and Junior A hockey in Penticton, helped the Penticton Broncos win the BCJHL and B.C.-Alberta championships and played NCAA hockey at Providence College.