Des Hague, CEO of Centreplate, resigns after abusing dog
Centerplate CEO was to donate $100K US toward establishment of an animal welfare foundation
Des Hague, the CEO of U.S. catering company Centreplate who was caught on video abusing a dog in a Vancouver hotel elevator, has resigned following the public furor over the incident.
"The decision comes as a result of Hague's personal misconduct involving the mistreatment of an animal in his care," Centreplate said in a statement on Tuesday morning.
In the elevator security video, Hague appears to kick at a small dog, which starts cowering, then swings it up off the ground by its leash, jerking it around.
"We want to reiterate that we do not condone nor would we ever overlook the abuse of animals," said Joe O'Donnell, chairman of the board of directors for Centerplate.
"Following an extended review of the incident involving Mr. Hague, I'd like to apologize for the distress that this situation has caused to so many; but also thank our employees, clients and guests who expressed their feelings about this incident. Their voices helped us to frame our deliberations during this very unusual and unfortunate set of circumstances."
After the video was first released, Hague had been placed on indefinite probation by Centerplate's board, which runs the food concession at B.C. Place and many U.S. sports facilities, on the understanding he could be terminated for such behaviour in the future.
He was also ordered by the company to donate $100,000 to set up a foundation "to help support the protection and safety of animals in the city of Vancouver where the incident occurred" and to perform 1,000 hours of community service with an animal welfare organization.
It remains unclear if Hague will still be donating the money.
In his place, the company has named Chris Verros as acting president and CEO.