Quick and Quiet Departures

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So...Mark Mastrov is leaving the company he founded 24 years ago and developed into the largest fitness club company in the industry today. I haven't heard too much fanfare about it, especially from 24 Hour Fitness. The company didn't put on its Web site an official press release about Mastrov leaving. Stuart Goldman, our managing editor, found out about it from a trusted source. After a check with the PR people for 24 Hour Fitness, we were issued a short statement confirming Mastrov is leaving Jan. 31. OK, so they have another week to make a big deal about their founder's departure, but I wonder if they will?

Then, Town Sports International (TSI) offered a three-sentence statement about the departure of Randall Stephen, their COO. No word on the reason for his resignation. However, just a week later, Richard Pyle's resignation as CFO at TSI was buried in a press release about the promotion of Daniel Gallagher to the CFO position. At least TSI noted that Pyle was leaving to pursue other interests and that after he officially leaves March 31, he will continue to consult with the company.

Pyle's departure seems to complete a change in the whole upper-level executive group at TSI, a publicly traded company whose stock has been dropping in the past few months (although whose stock hasn't these days?). Robert Giardina left in October, replaced as CEO by Alex Alimanestianu.

I often think that the length of an announcement about a person's departure says a lot about the conditions under which they left. I'll leave it up to you to decide what that means about these three men's departures.

I'm on the edge of my seat to see who is leaving what company next -- and how short the release announcing their departure will be. That is, if they even get an official announcement. --Pam

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