Buchko to take over as Blue CEO

PAUL FRIESEN, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 12:57 AM ET

WINNIPEG - The Winnipeg Blue Bombers are poised to unveil their new CEO, Thursday.

Longtime radio executive Garth Buchko will take over from Ossama AbouZeid, hired on an interim basis in July.

Buchko moves to the Bombers from the team’s radio rights holder, CJOB/Power 97, where he served as general manager since the mid-1990s.

With a background in advertising sales, Buchko takes over the Bombers’ top job, last held on a permanent basis by Lyle Bauer in 2009, overseeing the entire organization and reporting directly to the board of directors.

However, unlike Bauer, a former player, Buchko’s day-to-day responsibilities aren’t expected to include football decisions.

While Bomber GM Joe Mack will report to the CEO, along with president Jim Bell, Mack is expected to continue to head up the football side, including decisions on the hiring and firing of coaches and the approval of contracts and football budgets.

“The GM is the top football spot in our organization — I don’t see that changing,” board chairman Bill Watchorn told the Sun last month.

Buchko graduated from Red River College’s sales and marketing program in 1982, moving to Saskatchewan for a few years before returning to Winnipeg as the sales manager at Q-94 FM.


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