ORDA announces search for new CEO

ORDA CEO Michael Pratt, left, shakes hands with Olympian Tucker West at the Olympic Speedskating Oval in Lake Placid in March. (Enterprise photo — Lauren Yates)

LAKE PLACID — The state Olympic Regional Development Authority is searching for a new president and CEO as Michael Pratt, ORDA’s current CEO, prepares for retirement.

ORDA Director of Communications Darcy Norfolk said that Pratt has not yet named his exact date of retirement. However, the authority wants to get a headstart on its search for a new CEO so that the organization can find “the right fit” for the job.

Pratt, 62, has served as ORDA’s CEO since 2017, when he was appointed following the retirement of former CEO Ted Blazer. But he’s worked with the authority for around 38 years, first as a Zamboni driver during the 1980 Winter Olympics in Lake Placid. Pratt was also the general manager of Gore Mountain for 21 years, starting in 1996.

Pratt has seen the organization through more than $550 million in state-funded upgrades to its winter venues ahead of the FISU Winter World University Games, which came to the village of Lake Placid and surrounding areas this past January. ORDA has also reduced its debt to zero under Pratt’s leadership, according to a news release from ORDA.

“Our venues are well-positioned for the future,” Joe Martens, chairman of ORDA’s Board of Directors, said in a statement. “Mike is always looking ahead, and, as a result, our venues are now among the best in the world. The board commends Mike’s outstanding leadership and wishes him the very best in retirement.”

Pratt announced his impending retirement to ORDA’s Board of Directors in an executive session during the board’s Tuesday meeting, according to Norfolk. ORDA held a manager’s meeting on Wednesday morning before sending a memo out to ORDA staff saying that Pratt was planning to retire.

Pratt serves on the Warren County Economic Development Corporation Board of Directors, the Ski Areas of NY Board of Directors, and the National Ski Areas Association Environmental Committee, according to a news release from ORDA. He lives with his wife Sandi in Chestertown and Lake Placid.

The job listing for the president and CEO position is online at orda.org.

This is a breaking news story. More details will be added to this story as more information becomes available.


Today's breaking news and more in your inbox

I'm interested in (please check all that apply)
Are you a paying subscriber to the newspaper? *

Starting at $4.75/week.

Subscribe Today