File photo by ADVOCATE staff Westerner Park CEO Ben Antifaiff and Red Deer and District Chamber of Commerce CEO Robin Bobocel at the Canadian Finals Rodeo announcement in January.

Departures of CEOs coincidental

Red Deer chamber and Westerner Park both looking for new CEOs

The departure of CEOs at both Westerner Park and Red Deer & District Chamber of Commerce within days really is a coincidence, say representatives from both organizations.

On Monday the chamber announced that Robin Bobocel had left the role of CEO effective immediately. On Wednesday Westerner Park announced that CEO Ben Antifaiff had left the employ of Westerner Park, also effective immediately.

Chamber president John MacKenzie said people want to draw a parallel between the departures since both organizations recently worked together to bring Canadian Finals Rodeo to Red Deer this fall.

“It’s a coincidence. It’s totally separate issues and totally separate people,” said MacKenzie on Thursday.

Damaian Zapisocky, Westerner Park president and board chair, echoed MacKenzie’s statement.

“They are unrelated. The fact that they occurred around the same time is a coincidence,” Zapisocky said.

Both the chamber and Westerner Park thanked their former CEOs for their contributions

Zapisocky said the change to management won’t impact the rodeo.

“We’ve got a team together working through all the details. We are excited about it and we do expect to put on a great event,” Zapisocky said.

MacKenzie said the CFR has no issue with the recent departures.

“We’re on track to have a really, really good show.”

Antifaiff and Bobocel were unavailable for comment.

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