Chiefs Chief Executive Officer Gary Dawson has announced that he is leaving the Chiefs at the end of the 2013 season after 13 years in the role.
Dawson stated that it was always his desire to leave the Chiefs when they were in a strong position and believes now is the right time with the Chiefs the current Super Rugby Champions and tracking well for another very successful season in 2013.
Dawson admitted that after 14 Chiefs Super Rugby seasons he will miss being intimately involved in the excitement that comes with each campaign, however on a personal level after 13 years it is time for a change.
Dawson advised that this announcement is being made now so that the Chiefs Board has time to recruit a new CEO who can be in place to start for the new financial year in September.
"My focus over the next few months will be on ensuring the Chiefs finish the 2013 season in the best possible position," said Dawson.
Chiefs' Chairman, Dallas Fisher said, "Gary's contribution to the Chiefs has been immense. He has done an outstanding job and leaves the Chiefs in a very strong position moving forward.
"Gary took a lead role in the Chiefs being the first Franchise to set up an independent management structure, he has implemented new integrated training and administration facilities at Ruakura, established new infrastructure within the organization and he and his team have set up commercial partners and taken our high performance rugby to a new level both on and off the field. "
"He has also invested a significant amount of time working on potential licensing opportunities and played a key role in the development of Waikato Stadium."
"On a personal level, I have thoroughly enjoyed working with Gary. On behalf of the board I wish him well and know he will continue to be highly successful at whatever he turns his hand to," said Mr Fisher
In 2012 the Chiefs made a record profit and now have a solid, viable, business model to build on going forward. Dawson said "We have fantastic, long term commercial partners who are incredibly loyal and supportive, and our fan base is growing ahead of expectations."
Dawson commented that he is particularly proud of the Chiefs staff and players who he believes are the best in the business and will take the Chiefs to even greater success in coming years.
"It has been a real privilege to work alongside incredibly talented people who are passionate about the Chiefs," said Dawson.
The Chiefs will commence a recruitment process for a replacement CEO later in the month. Mr Dawson will leave the Chiefs in late August.