PORTLAND, Ore. (KPTV) – The Portland Trail Blazers are a making a change in front office leadership.

The team announced on Friday that CEO and President Chris McGowan is stepping down. His resignation will be effective on Nov. 26.

The Trail Blazers are elevating Dewayne Hankins to President of Business Operations. Hankins previously served as Chief Commercial Officer and Executive Vice President.

Trail Blazers President and CEO McGowan resigns; front office member promoted to fill role

Photo of Dewayne Hankins (Portland Trail Blazers)

The change in the front office comes as an investigation continues into the team’s workplace environment. The Trail Blazers announced last week it had hired an independent firm to investigate the workplace environment at the team’s practice facility. The team said a concern raised by non-player personnel prompted the investigation.

Several reports had indicated the investigation involved Trail Blazers general manager and President of Basketball Operations Neil Olshey.

The team has not said if the resignation of McGowan is related to the ongoing investigation.

Hankins joined the Trail Blazers in 2013 from Anschutz Entertainment Group. He oversaw the digital efforts of AEG’s sports properties worldwide, including the Los Angeles Kings and Los Angeles Galaxy. Before joining AEG, he spent time with the Minnesota Wild and began his career with the Miami Marlins as a public relations intern.

McGowan joined the team in 2012. The team said since he began, it has seen dramatic growth in ticket sales, sponsorship, retail, arena operations and food and beverage.

“I want to thank Paul Allen, Jody Allen and Bert Kolde for giving me the opportunity to lead this great organization over the past nine years,” McGowan said in a press release. “In addition, I want to thank our amazing staff for their tireless dedication to creating extraordinary moments at Moda Center and in the community and thank our players who represent everything that is good about Portland.”

The Trail Blazers said under Hankins, the team achieved franchise records in ticket sales and corporate sponsorships. He played a key role in signing the first cryptocurrency company, StormX, to an NBA jersey patch deal in 2021. He also negotiated the broadcast deal with ROOT Sports, expanding the team’s coverage area in Oregon, Washington and Alaska.

“Since joining the Trail Blazers in 2013, Dewayne has been crucial to our success and growth,” Jody Allen, chair of the Trail Blazers, said in a press release. “Now in his ninth season with us, we’re thrilled to have him lead the organization.”

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