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Union president departs, but will serve as consultant

Union president Tom Veit is exiting stage left for a role behind the scenes.

Union president Tom Veit is exiting stage left for a role behind the scenes.

Veit is stepping down and will take over as a consultant to the team and to Union CEO and managing partner Nick Sakiewicz.

Veit, who originally joined the team as a consultant through his Tampa, Fla.,-based company, The Solutions Group, was appointed team president in April 2009.

"I love Philly, but I am a Florida guy and Tampa is my home," Veit told the Daily News.

From Tampa, Veit will act as a liaison for the Union in upcoming and ongoing deals, most notably talks of bringing Villanova football to PPL Park, the Union's 18,500-seat facility in Chester.

"It was decided all along that I would not stay on as president once the team was on strong footing, but I will still remain with the Union on a consulting capacity."

Veit will remain as team president until the end of the year. Current CEO and managing partner Nick Sakiewicz, who has long been the face on the business end of the club, will assume all responsibilities. Assisting Sakiewicz will be Dave Rowan, hired last week as the team's executive vice president and chief revenue officer.

"Nothing will be left hanging because I am still involved. I'll be in Philly every month to ensure that even though I am ramping up Solutions Group, I am there to assist in any way possible," said Veit. "I am extremely proud of what we have built and if I didn't feel comfortable leaving now, I wouldn't have. Now we are an operating MLS franchise, moving into phase two and you need continuity in the people that are moving the club in that direction. That's what we have in Dave Rowan and what we've have always had in Nick."

Sakiewicz confirmed that this was the original agreement when he appointed Veit club president.

"This was always the case with Tom he was always here to help us get through startup and launch the team," Sakiewicz told the Daily News. "My deal with him was he would go back and live his normal life but stay on as a consultant."

Veit, a Florida native, was hired by Sakiewicz in the late 1990s when Sakiewicz was the general manager of MLS' now-defunct Tampa Bay Mutiny franchise. Veit oversaw sponsorship deals and ticket sales revenue. According to Veit's bio on the Philadelphia Union Web site, the Mutiny saw record increases during Veit's time at the helm.

"He's an experienced startup guy, and I needed experienced startup guys on my staff," said Sakiewicz. "But that phase is finished and we are moving forward. There will be very little changes made here. I have always been involved in the management side of all of this now it's time that I do things more day-to-day."