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Eels appoint Bernie Gurr as new CEO

AAP logoAAP 7/09/2016 By Matt Encarnacion

Parramatta has found its man to lead its rebuild.

After a six-week search, former Sydney Roosters boss Bernie Gurr was on Wednesday appointed as the Eels' new CEO at least until the end of 2019.

After spending the past nine years as a senior executive at Crown Worldwide Group in the United States, Gurr is expected to start late next month, taking over from disgraced boss John Boulous.

"Following my appointment in July, I made it clear we needed a strong and experienced CEO to accelerate the rebuilding of the football club," chairman Max Donnelly said.

"Bernie emerged as the best choice because of his proven financial and leadership experience both in business and in sports administration."

Gurr, who previously played for the Roosters in the early 80s, was also CEO of the club for nine years, overseeing eight straight finals series, including three grand finals and the 2002 premiership.

He said it was a privilege to be named chief executive at the club.

"The Parramatta Eels are poised for an outstanding future, with a large and passionate supporter base, a great junior league, financial sustainability and, from 2019, the absolute best club stadium in Australia located in the geographic heart of Sydney," he said.

"Observing from the outside, the Parramatta football program is headed in the right direction.

"The resilience and competitiveness demonstrated throughout an extremely demanding 2016 season is a tribute to head coach, Brad Arthur, and his players."

Gurr takes over from Boulous, who was one of five Eels executives deregistered by the governing body over the salary cap cheating that resulted in the team being stripped 12 competition points earlier this year.

Gurr has also held jobs at accounting giant Ernst and Young, as well as director of finance for the FIFA World Cup in 1994.

Eels legend Peter Sterling called for Gurr to be appointed to the role four months ago.

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