11/15/2005 12:00AM

Guild votes to fire Gertmenian


A reconstituted board of directors of the Jockeys' Guild voted during a meeting on Tuesday to fire L. Wayne Gertmenian, the guild's chief executive officer since 2001, and terminate its contract with Gertmenian's consulting company, Matrix Capital Associates, according to a release distributed by the board immediately following its teleconference call.

Gertmenian, a polarizing figure who has attracted controversy since being hired by the guild as a result of a rift on the guild's then board of directors, was fired after the guild's senate amended its bylaws to give the senate the power to replace the board of directors, according to the release. Immediately following the bylaw change, the guild elected John Velazquez as chairman, replacing David Shepherd, a Gertmenian supporter. The board then voted "to terminate L. Wayne Gertmenian and Matrix Capital Associates immediately," the statement said.

Gertmenian was paid $165,000 a year by the guild. Matrix Capital Associates, whose sole owner was Gertmenian, was paid approximately $335,000 a year.

The statement from the board said that the board also voted to install Darrell Haire as the guild's temporary national manager. Haire is a regional representative of the guild who last week issued a statement calling for Gertmenian to resign.

In addition to Velazquez, the new directors include Tomey Jean Swan, vice chair; Alex Solis, secretary; Jeff Johnston, treasurer; and five at-large directors: Mike Luzzi, G. R. Carter, Jerry LaSala, Larry Reynolds, and Jon Court.