Sacramento Republic FC president Ben Gumpert announced Monday morning he was leaving the organization. The announcement follows the news last week that billionaire investor Ron Burkle was no longer supporting the team, putting the team’s bid to join MLS in 2023 in jeopardy.
“I do so with a heavy heart, but also one full of immense pride for all that we have accomplished together,” he said in a statement on the team’s website. “I do so knowing that no matter where I go or what new opportunities lie ahead, I will always be a part of Republic FC. I have agreed to stay on at this time as an Advisor to provide assistance in all areas to Kevin Nagle and ownership, the team, and City leadership. I am still confident that a first-class investor will emerge who recognizes the potential of this club and city, and that MLS remains in Sacramento’s future.”
Gumpert joined Republic FC in 2017 as the team made a push to move up from the USL to MLS, the top division in American soccer. He worked on a deal to build a new soccer stadium and surrounding development in Sacramento’s long-languishing railyards.
Before joining the soccer team, he was the chief marketing officer for the Sacramento Kings. In that role, he helped in the design and construction of Golden 1 Center. Before joining the Kings, Gumpert spent five years working for the NBA league office.
“Growing up in Sacramento, I couldn’t have dreamt about an opportunity to play a role such as this, helping to shape a club in my hometown at its earliest stages, starting traditions and laying a foundation that will be built upon for years to come,” Gumpert said. “I only hope that I have put in a fraction of what I have taken from this fortuitous opportunity.”