The BC Lions announced Monday that Dennis Skulsky would be stepping aside as club President and CEO and will be transitioning to the role of Vice Chairman. The move is an interesting one on many fronts, and Lowell Ullrich covers it well over at 3DownNation.com.
There is no denying that Skulsky guided the Lions through some important years after the passing of Bob Ackles. The club won a Grey Cup in 2011 in the newly renovated BC Place stadium but that’s also when things seemed to peak. The last few seasons have seen attendance decline, along with the product on the field and the Lions have a lot of work to do get back to levels they recently enjoyed, on and off the field.
As we noted above, Lowell has some interesting observations on the shuffle, so give it a read. You can also find an official announcement from the team here. In the meantime, here is a letter sent by Skulsky to Lions season ticket holders earlier today, where he outlines his reasons for the change.
I have some personal news to share with you today. I have just announced to staff here a few minutes ago that I will be retiring from my role as President and CEO of the BC Lions Football Club effective April 1, 2016.
I wanted you to hear from me because it’s been in the works for some time now. I informed our owner David Braley last fall during Grey Cup week of my desire to move into the next phase of my life. David asked me and ultimately convinced me to stay on as Vice-Chairman, representing the Lions on the CFL Board of Governors, in the business community and on some strategic projects.
My new role will see me commit at least 25% of my time to these duties, which for me is a perfect blend of my two greatest passions, family and BC Lions football.
To put context to this, the past couple of years have been challenging for me with some family health issues, the passing of my father, all of which is a reminder that life is very precious.
I feel truly blessed to have had the privilege, honor and opportunity to be a member of the BC Lions organization and to have this dream job of leading this team in a league I grew up cheering for and admiring. After some 43 years of continuous full time employment, the time is right for me to spend more time with my wife, family and grandchildren.
I’ve been inspired by the loyal fan base the BC Lions have. It’s been a real pleasure to meet and talk to many of you. The BC Lions are fortunate to have fans like you.
David Braley is entering his 20th season as the team owner and now will assume the interim role as President working closely with Wally Buono, George Chayka and our staff in preparing the Lions for the upcoming CFL season.
My sincere thanks go out David, Wally, George and the entire staff for their tremendous support. I believe we’re in for an exciting and successful upcoming season of Lions football.
Thank you again for the personal encouragement, support and you can rest assured, I will continue to bleed orange and do everything possible to help the team.
With my sincere gratitude and best regards,
President, CEO & Waterboy
BC Lions Football Club