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Three top officials leave Monumental Sports

Three longtime employees have left the organization Monumental Sports & Entertainment. (Photo by Toni L. Sandys/Washington Post)

Three senior officials at Monumental Sports & Entertainment – the Ted Leonsis-led group that owns the Wizards and Capitals — departed the organization in recent days as part of a significant leadership restructuring that left some of their colleagues rattled.

The departed executives include Kurt Kehl (senior vice president and chief communications officer); Joe Dupriest (senior vice president and chief marketing officer) and Kim Frank (vice president of marketing).

Kehl, the chief spokesman for Monumental Sports since its formation, has been with the Capitals organization since 2002, working closely with Leonsis, with Monumental’s broadcasters and broadcast partners, and with local media members. Dupriest has been with the organization for nine years; he helped the Caps launch their “Rock the Red” campaign in 2008, a marketing push that came to define the Alex Ovechkin era. And Frank has been with the organization since 2007, helping the Caps launch both their women’s group (Scarlet Caps) and the popular Caps Convention.

In recent years, Monumental Sports has “expanded our business ventures to include the AFL and the Monumental Sports Network,” the group said in an e-mail to staffers. During that process, “we have progressively decentralized our marketing and communications functions,” the e-mail went on. “We have determined that we no longer have a need for an organizational-wide position for these functions and we are eliminating the chief positions in both of these departments.”

Kehl was listed not only as the CCO of Monumental Sports, but also as the senior vice president of communications for the Wizards and the senior vice president of corporate communications for the Capitals. He “helped transform Washington, D.C. into a passionate and informed hockey city,” according to the staff e-mail, which said he will continue to work on special projects for Leonsis on an interim basis.

Dupriest, meantime, was the chief marketing officer for both teams. In addition to Rock the Red, he helped create the #dcRising Wizards marketing campaign; led the push to expand both teams into the Baltimore market; and helped lead the design of new Capitals uniforms (including the 2015 Winter Classic models) and the Wizards new primary logo.

Both men declined to comment on their departures.