Commonwealth Games Federation (CGF) director of operations John Eades is to leave his position to take up a role with the Manchester United Foundation, insidethegames has been told.
Eades was appointed to the job in 2003 following successful stints working on the operational side of the 1998 Commonwealth Games in Kuala Lumpur and at the Games in Manchester four years later.
He has played a key role in three editions of the organisation’s flagship event - Melbourne 2006, Delhi 2010 and the 2014 Games in Glasgow, widely-regarded as one of the best to ever take place - as well as four Commonwealth Youth Games.
The 50-year-old will bring his time with the CGF to an end on November 6 before he starts his director of operations role with the MU Foundation, a charity which delivers football coaching, educational programmes and personal development to disadvantaged young people across Manchester, three days later.
“I'll be sad to leave the Commonwealth Family after many years working with athletes, Organising Committees, International Federations and Commonwealth Games Associations to help get the Commonwealth sports movement to the flourishing position it is in today,” Eades told insidethegames.
“However, after four Games cycles, and on the back of a hugely successful Commonwealth Youth Games in Samoa, I feel the time is right for new challenges, and this new opportunity with the biggest football club in the world, contributing to the important life-changing work of the Foundation, was too good to miss.”
Eades has extensive experience in the field and has previously worked with the Children for Peace charity, now called Foundation for Peace, as well as sports event management consultancy firm Byrom as project manager.
“John has had a profound impact on the delivery and direction of the CGF over many years of service,” CGF chief executive David Grevemberg added.
“On behalf of his friends and colleagues across the Commonwealth, we applaud his achievements and wish him all the very best for the next exciting chapter in his sporting career.”
The MU Foundation, based at the Premier League football club’s Old Trafford Stadium, run a series of events in order to engage the local community which are often attended by some of the team’s players.
Eades will be tasked with leading several of the charity's projects and initiatives and MU Foundation chairman Richard Arnold is delighted to be welcoming him to the organisation.
“It’s great that someone of John’s experience is joining the Manchester United Foundation, with his network of friends and colleagues across the Commonwealth,” he said.
“The Foundation harnesses the power of sport and the Club's name to deliver real and positive changes in the lives of thousands of young people in Manchester every year.
“The challenge in the future will be how to use that expertise right across the global Manchester United community and John will play a key role in that.”