Peter Lawwell, chief executive of Scottish champions Celtic, has announced he will be retiring from the role this summer to be replaced by Scottish Rugby's chief operating officer Dominic McKay.
Lawwell, who has been with Celtic since 2003, has overseen a period of resounding success throughout his 17 year stint, which has delivered 29 trophies to the Glasgow based club, made up of 13 league titles, four domestic trebles and participation in the UEFA Champions League on three separate occasions.
McKay leaves Scottish Rugby after 13 years, having first been appointed as director of communications and public affairs in 2008, before taking on wider group responsibilities from 2011 and joining the Scottish Rugby Board as an Executive Director from 2013.
In 2015, McKay became chief operating officer and has been responsible for the management of the BT Murrayfield stadium as well as all commercial, marketing, ticketing and communications activity, alongside heading Scottish Rugby’s Threat Management Group in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Describing McKay as an "excellent successor", Lawwell said in a statement: "It has been an enormous privilege to have served the Club and our supporters for more than 17 years – a wonderful honour to have been part of an institution I have loved and supported all my life.
“I will always be very proud of what we have achieved together and it has been a particular privilege to be involved throughout a period in the Club's history which has brought immense domestic success - as well as so many great European nights at Celtic Park.
"...I believe the Club have identified an excellent successor with the highest integrity who will bring substantial experience and enthusiasm to the role. I wish him every success in the future."
In pursuit of achieving 10 league titles in a row, Celtic have stumbled both on and off the pitch, facing criticism from fans after the side dropped 23 points behind rivals Rangers in the Scottish Premiership.
The cub also faced backlash following a warm weather training camp in Dubai against government advice during the coronavirus pandemic.
"It has been a difficult year for everyone in so many ways and I just wanted to take this opportunity once again to wish our supporters well. Even in a period of such adversity, upheaval and uncertainty, which our fans have faced in their own lives and communities, so many supporters have been with us again in such huge numbers. I sincerely thank all those supporters who have stayed with us.
“Celtic will always be the biggest and the best club in Scotland and our supporters will always be everything to our success. We need our fans with us to achieve that success.
On his appointment to the role, McKay said: "Joining Celtic FC as chief executive is a once in a lifetime opportunity and a new challenge I am very excited about taking on later this year. I have been incredibly impressed with the vision and people within the club and I look forward to working with them.”
Author: Jake Wilkin