From the hall outside the second-floor Hamilton Tiger-Cat offices at Tim Hortons Field Matt Afinec can look through the north end zone and see the church where he was christened.
And on Tuesday afternoon at the stadium, where Hamiltonians gather for a more secular type of worship, the Ticats announced that Afinec is their new president and chief operating officer.
“I’m humbled and honoured and thankful to Scott and Bob (Young) for the opportunity,” said Afinec. “And to the fans and corporate partners who have made us a success.”
The 38-year-old Burlington native, who’s been with the Ticats since 2010, has been the Ticats executive vice-president of business for three years. His grandparents owned a house a the corner of Lottridge and Cannon Streets and both his father and grandfather attended Prince of Wales School, which is 50 metres from the main gate of Tim Hortons Field.
“Matt’s done a fantastic job with the organization,” said Ticats CEO Scott Mitchell. “He’s been with the Bob Young group of companies for nearly 10 years and has really been the lead executive running the business operations of the Tiger-Cats the past couple of years. He’s the right guy to lead the Ticat business operations in the next phase, and of course a guy with deep, great Hamilton and regional roots. It’s fantastic to have him in the role.”
Mitchell says the organizational structure won’t change, with football operations reporting directly to him and Afinec reporting directly to him on all sides of the business interests of the company. Mitchell, who’s busy in a number of ventures for Young’s group of companies (including the Canadian Premier Soccer League), said he’ll still work closely with Afinec but will now be able to get back to spending more time helping with the football operations side of the franchise.
Prior to joining the Ticats, Afinec spent five years with the Toronto Argonauts. He oversaw revenue for the 2007 Grey Cup, the first held in Toronto in 25 years and that’s where he first met Mitchell.
Afinec graduated from Burlington’s Lester B Pearson High School and studied industrial relations at McGill University.
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