North Queensland Cowboys chairman Lawrence Lancini. Picture: Evan Morgan
North Queensland Cowboys chairman Lawrence Lancini. Picture: Evan Morgan

Cowboys search for new CEO

THE North Queensland Cowboys are keen to "road test" their new commercial structure while assessing applicants for the recently vacated CEO position.

Cowboys chairman Laurence Lancini confirmed to the Bulletin ex-CEO Greg Tonner had only weeks remaining on his contract before resigning on Tuesday and the club now focused on moving forward with a new structural direction,

Mr Lancini said the Cowboys board intended to trial the newly created structure with Jeff Reibel, as acting CEO and Michael Luck as chief operations officer (COO).

"We didn't previously have a COO," Mr Lancini said.

"There's a lot of change in dynamic with how things are happening within the club and with transitioning to the new stadium and a high performance centre.

"The board has decided that we now want to look at a different management structure then we have previously had to go through to this next level."

Mr Lancini said as part of the restructure the club would look to bring in another commercial manager and make an overall assessment of what the club will need to go through the upcoming transition period.

"The next year or so is important… it's very exciting times," Mr Lancini said.

"We are making these structural changes to help improve the club and ensure we stay competitive and sustainable."

This restructure of the commercial side of the club comes as director of football Peter Parr is well underway reviewing the entire football department.

Mr Reibel has declared his interest in turning his acting CEO appointment into a permanent one but he may be set for some stiff competition.

Mr Lancini said the first inquiry about the job he received came through at 9am the morning after Mr Tonner's resignation became public knowledge.

"I have been bombarded with inquiries already," he said.

"That's understandable, it's a high profile role and I think it's a fantastic opportunity for anyone.

"We'd be happy to field as many genuine calls of interest as possible… when you go into a transition period like this and you put someone acting into the role, it gives you plenty of time.

"We want to make the right decision and we want to make sure we have the right structures in place."

Mr Lancini praised Mr Tonner's accomplishments in his time at the Cowboys, noting the 'wonderful job he did with connecting the club to the fans'.