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People on the move: ECB, Arsenal and more

Richard Thompson has been appointed as the new chair of the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB), a position that has been vacant since October last year.

Thompson (pictured) will take up a five-year post on September 1, moving from his current role as chair of Surrey County Cricket Club. His appointment comes following a rigorous selection process chaired by independent director Brenda Trenowden.

Thompson succeeds Martin Darlow, who has been serving as interim chair since April. The ECB’s last permanent chair was Ian Watmore, who stepped down from the role with immediate effect last October.

During his time at Surrey, Thompson oversaw the development of the Kia Oval and the launch of the ACE Programme. Outside of cricket, Thompson is the founder and chair of M&C Saatchi Merlin and the chair of the broader M&C Saatchi UK Group.

Premier League club Arsenal has appointed Karen Smart as its new chief operating officer, according to The Athletic.

Smart most recently served as managing director at Manchester Airports Group. Her new role at Arsenal will reportedly cover Emirates Stadium, all facilities, IT and travel, and also includes a seat on the club’s executive board.

Gilbert Gouveia has been appointed as head of stadiums and venues for Australian construction and engineering company BESIX Watpac.

Gouveia has worked on all major stadium and venue projects for BESIX Watpac over the past 20 years and most recently oversaw the delivery of Queensland Country Bank Stadium. He also played a key role in developing the design solutions for the new multi-purpose stadium in Christchurch, New Zealand.

The appointment comes as BESIX Watpac gears up for the 2032 Summer Olympic Games in Brisbane.

Andrew Taylor has joined Premier League football club Tottenham Hotspur as its catering services director.

Taylor joins Tottenham after previously serving as head of catering at City Football Group. Prior to that, he worked as head of global hospitality and guest experience at Formula 1 team Williams Racing.

English League Two football club Harrogate Town has appointed Hamilton Mattock as its first fan engagement manager.

The appointment ties in with Harrogate’s plans to improve its match-day experience and grow its fan base. The role will allow the club to work more closely with junior clubs, schools, organisations and its community foundation.

The National Lacrosse League has named Brett Frood as its new commissioner.

Frood joins the league from NASCAR team Stewart-Haas Racing, where he has served as president since its inception in 2008. He will begin his new role on September 1 and becomes the fifth commissioner of the NLL since its relaunch in 1997.

Do you have news of an appointment that we should know about? Get in touch by emailing news.editor@thestadiumbusiness.com and we’ll include it in our next round-up.

Image: ECB