Ottawa Senators fire Cyril Leeder and hire former MLSE executive
Ottawa Senators owner Eugene Melnyk has fired one of the founding fathers of the franchise as the team continues with its plans to build a new arena at Lebreton Flats.
Cyril Leeder is out after 25 years with the Ottawa Senators.
Leeder is being replaced by Tom Anselmi, the former Chief Operating Officer for Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment.
Melynk told a news conference today he made the organizational move because of the scope and size of the LeBreton Flats project. Melynk praised Anselmi's track record in building and branding new ventures.
The Ottawa Senators was selected as the preferred bidder to redevlop the LeBreton site. Melynk says that project will change Ottawa's downtown landscape for generations.
Leeder was part of the original group that pitched the NHL for an expansion franchise in 1990. Leeder along with Bruce Firestone and Randy Sexton formed Terrace Investments which promised to build a modern NHL arena on Kanata farmland.
Since then, Leeder has been one of Ottawa's biggest hockey promoters. Leeder helped to create the Bell Capital Cup, joined in partnerships to build Sensplex arenas in the city, and was involved in numerous community projects including the Ottawa Senators Foundation.
Recently, Leeder led the charge in Ottawa's pitch to host the 2021 Canada Summer games. Leeder also played a key role in helping Melnyk find a liver donor when the Senators owner was ill in 2015.
Very sorry to see Cyril Leeder leave the Sens. He has been an incredible civic booster and has contributed so much to our City and region.— Jim Watson (@JimWatsonOttawa) January 25, 2017