Who is Michael Nicholson, the latest Celtic CEO who will replace Dom McKay?

Celtic caught Scottish football by surprise with the shock announcement of Dominic McKay’s departure from the club late on Friday afternoon.
Celtic are seeking a new CEO after Dom McKay stepped down. (Photo by Craig Foy/SNS Group)Celtic are seeking a new CEO after Dom McKay stepped down. (Photo by Craig Foy/SNS Group)
Celtic are seeking a new CEO after Dom McKay stepped down. (Photo by Craig Foy/SNS Group)

The chief executive had only been in place for 144 days since moving from Scottish Rugby Union and a phased handover of the Parkhead reins with Peter Lawwell.

However the club CEO has stepped down and will be replaced, on a temporary basis, while Celtic source a successor.

Who is taking over as CEO at Celtic after Dom McKay’s resignation?

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Michael Nicholson will replace Dominic McKay for the foreseeable future, as acting chief executive officer. Mr Nicholson has been described as “an absolute team player” by the club’s chairman Ian Bankier. Mr McKay stood down on September 10 citing personal reasons. After reporting the news to the stock exchange the chairman publicly thanked him “for his efforts on behalf of the club and everyone wishes Dom and his family very well for the future”.

What is the background of Michael Nicholson?

The 45-year-old has been at Celtic for eight years, first as Company Secretary and Head of Legal and more recently progressing to director of legal and football affairs in 2019. Prior to joining Celtic his career was also in the legal sphere, as a partner at Harper McLeod. Specialising in sports law, he is also involved in the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) as an arbitrator.

The club statement said he is widely known and highly thought of in European and UK football circles and will take on the role in an acting capacity.

Who have previously been the Celtic CEO?

Though temporarily taking the role, Mr Nicholson will be the third CEO at Celtic this year. Peter Lawwell started the year in situ but called time on 11 years at the helm of the club at the end of June after announcing his intentions in January.

Dominic McKay replaced him, moving from the SRU in April and officially starting his job in July of this year.

Before Peter Lawwell was Ian McLeod who had spent two years at Parkhead after succeeding Allan MacDonald whose tenure began in 1998. Before Mr MacDonald, Fergus McCann and Terry Cassidy also held the chief executive title.

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