Anthony LeBlanc leaves the Halifax CFL group to take on an executive role with the Senators

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The Ottawa Senators have named Anthony LeBlanc president of their operations.

LeBlanc was recently one of the founding partners of Schooner Sports and Entertainment, a group trying to bring a CFL team to Halifax.

He was President, CEO and Alternate Governor of the Arizona Coyotes from 2013 to 2017. Prior to joining the Coyotes, LeBlanc was Vice President of Global Sales for the Canadian technology company BlackBerry Limited.

The Senators announced the hiring of LeBlanc about six weeks after the dismissal of former CEO Jim Little. Few spent less than two months at work.

Senators say Little was fired for behavior “inconsistent” with core team and NHL values, but Little said the reasons for his dismissal were the result of heated disagreement between himself and the owner of the team, Eugene Melnyk.

Schooner Sports and Entertainment said Monday it remains committed to bringing an expansion CFL franchise to Halifax, and a person familiar with the situation told The Canadian Press that LeBlanc would stay with the group in a more limited role.

“We would like to congratulate Anthony LeBlanc on his new position with the Ottawa Senators,” the organization said in a statement. “Schooner Sport and Entertainment’s [SSE] the partners have always held or held leadership positions in North American sports companies and organizations in addition to the SSE.

“SSE remains committed to developing a community stadium in Halifax and bringing the 10th CFL franchise to Atlantic Canada. Another of SSE’s founding partners, Gary Drummond, will assume the role of lead spokesperson for the group in the future. “

CFL Commissioner Randy Ambrosie was not immediately available to comment. Last month, he said he contacted officials at Schooner Sports and Entertainment to reiterate his vision of having the Atlantic Schooners on board to make the league a truly national entity.

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