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Chuck Domino, founding member of Richmond Flying Squirrels, stepping down from role

Richmond Flying SquirrelsRichmond Flying Squirrels chief executive Chuck Domino is stepping down from his role with the organization, the team announced on Thursday.

As part of a baseball career spanning four decades, Domino was a founding member of the Richmond Flying Squirrels organization. He joined the franchise in 2009 to facilitate its move from Norwich, Conn., to Richmond, and he led the club’s effort to overhaul The Diamond and establish the team’s brand in Virginia.

In the franchise’s first season in 2010, Domino was named Eastern League Executive of the Year as the Flying Squirrels led the circuit in overall and average attendance. Over the last decade, the Flying Squirrels have been at the top of the league in average attendance six times and finished second four times.

The team has also ranked in the top-two in the league in total attendance in nine of its ten seasons.

Along the way, the Flying Squirrels brand has become one of the most recognizable across minor league baseball and has established itself an impactful part of the Richmond-area community, while upgrades to The Diamond have enhanced the fan experience at games.

“I am very proud of what was accomplished since I first set eyes on the Diamond in the summer of 2009,” Domino said in a statement. “To get it ready for baseball in a few short months on a finite budget, to build a front office, instill a culture from scratch and then to watch that staff and culture become a fabric of the Richmond community is something that I will always cherish.

“That whirlwind of months leading up to the first game in April 2010 as the Flying Squirrels alongside Parney and a group of other devoted professionals was a special time,” Domino said. “We didn’t accomplish our goal of moving into a new stadium during my tenure but it many ways what we did without a new stadium is even more impressive. I’d like to thank Eastern League President Joe McEacharn for fighting to get us into Richmond and to Lou DiBella for giving me the opportunity which led to a decade of great memories and friendships in Richmond.”

DiBella publicly thanked Domino, who he said “was an integral part of our move to Richmond and the launch of the Flying Squirrels.”

“He was an invaluable asset, particularly during our transition and renovations of The Diamond. Chuck leaves the management of the Squirrels in fine hands of our new Chief Executive Officer, Todd ‘Parney’ Parnell, and General Manager Ben Rothrock, who will add vice president to his title. I wish Chuck Godspeed in all that is ahead for him and Domino Consulting,” DiBella said.

“Personally and professionally, I’m grateful to Chuck for our relationship that now spans five decades,” Parnell said. “He is a minor league baseball legend. I will be forever thankful for his personal guidance and friendship.”

McEacharn, in a statement, said he “couldn’t be more proud of and appreciative to Chuck for under-promising and over-delivering to the people of Richmond” in his tenure with the Flying Squirrels.

“The Squirrels have developed a root system here in the Richmond community that will produce Nuts for a very long time,” McEacharn said. “He leaves the team poised to grow even further with the structure in place and that speaks volumes of the person I consider to be the very best there is in MiLB. Richmond should not be disappointed at his departure, but you should be thankful and celebrate his ever-lasting impact in your community.

“We look forward to many more years of wonderful accomplishments from the Flying Squirrels and will remain thankful for his everlasting impact. The good news is Chuck and I are close friends, so I can continue to call on him for advice. My very best wishes go out to Chuck in whatever he chooses to do.”

augusta free press
augusta free press