Athletics Canada says CEO Dave Bedford retiring immediately

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Published January 19, 2022 at 6:25 pm

TORONTO — Dave Bedford is out as the CEO of Athletics Canada.

The national governing body for track and field has announced that Bedford would be retiring immediately.

The news comes after the board of directors for track and field’s national governing body held an emergency meeting on Monday after receiving complaints about Bedford’s social media activity.

The CBC reported that the vote to terminate Bedford was nearly unanimous. 

Mat Gentes, the current chief operating officer, has been named interim-CEO. 

The complaints arose over numerous tweets that were sexual in nature that were posted on Bedford’s Twitter account. Some of posts dated back to the Tokyo Olympics.

In one exchange, a woman alludes to oral sex. A tweet from Bedford’s account responds: “You are killing me girl. Don’t know whether to laugh or cry reading your tweets!”

In another, a woman remarks about not wearing a bra. A tweet from Bedford’s account responds: “Always important to have a couple of firm, upstanding individuals.”

Bedford was hired by Athletics Canada in 2019 after numerous high-profile sports positions over 40 years in the business. 

He was the executive director, marketing and communications with the Canadian Olympic Committee, the executive director of Team Canada for the 2018 Commonwealth Games, the senior vice-president of business operations for the Toronto Argonauts and the 100th Grey Cup Festival. 

A recipient of the Queen Elizabeth II Jubilee Medal, Bedford has also served on the board of directors for the Canadian Olympic Committee and Water Polo Canada, and was the chef de mission for the 2004 Olympic Games.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Jan. 18, 2022. 

Lori Ewing, The Canadian Press

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