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Chiefs looking for a new General Manager

The Lakefield Fitzsimmons Towing & Repair Chiefs are looking for a new General Manager.

Murray Henderson gave notice to the Chiefs’ board of directors Wednesday he’ll not be returning for the 2014-15 OHA Central Jr. C season.

Henderson took over the post on an interim basis last year when Terry Dunford, Chiefs’ GM for 20 years, suffered an aneurysm. Henderson said it was never his intention to take the role on permanently.

“When Terry unfortunately took ill they had no one to run it and they approached me,” said Henderson. “I was just a volunteer and was not even on the board of directors. I told them I’d help them out on an interim basis.”

At the end of last season it was clear Dunford would not be returning and Henderson said he committed to one more year because so much change occurred with Dunford’s absence. He told the board in August he wouldn’t be staying beyond this season. Since no one on the board has opted to take over the role, Henderson said it was time to go public to find a replacement. He says he’ll stay on to the end of this season to help with the new GM’s transition.

“In all fairness to the hockey club and to myself, I thought it was best to let it be known I wouldn’t be back,” he said.

Henderson said he was honoured the board had confidence to approach him in the first place and he’s found the role “challenging and rewarding.”

He said he couldn’t have done it without support of the board, OHA officials, other GMs and commissioner Liz Basinger.

The Chiefs are currently riding a 13-game winning streak and sit atop the league standings.

“The team is in a good position right now for someone new to come in and keep the ball rolling,” said Henderson.

Chiefs’ president Don Dunford said Henderson “stepped up to the plate” in a time of need. Not only did he assume the GM’s role he was instrumental in organizing Lakefield hockey’s 50th anniversary reunion this past summer.

“We’re certainly going to miss Murray. It’s hard to find someone like that,” said Dunford. “He’s done a fantastic job and that’s why I hate to see him go. He’s very laid back and easy to deal with. You have very few problems when you’re dealing with Murray.”

Dunford hopes to find someone with experience.

“Someone who has a background in at least a AAA level of hockey or preferably someone who has junior experience,” he said. “Who is willing to deal with the OHA on a weekly basis and attend all the meetings whether it be in our own division or at the AGM.”

The GM looks after game night operations, player transactions and works closely with head coach Tim McCormick and director of hockey operations Jim Carson.

Interested parties can send a letter or resume outlining their qualifications to Dunford by mail at 11 RR4, Buckhorn, Ont., K0L 1J0 or by e-mail to barb.dunford@yahoo.com. Deadline for applications is Jan. 24, 2014.

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