The man whose leadership led to the creation of secure entrances at many Manitoba Liquor Marts will be on the move in the new year.
Manny Atwal is leaving his position as president and chief executive officer with Manitoba Liquor & Lotteries on Jan. 6, to pursue an opportunity in the private sector, a news release said Wednesday.
The Crown corporation is responsible for the sale of liquor and cannabis products in the province, and also oversees legalized gambling.
In the release, board chair Bonnie Mitchelson said Atwal had a positive impact early in his tenure, which began on Nov. 4, 2019.
Barely two weeks after Atwal started the job, an attack at the Tyndall Park Liquor Mart left three employees injured; one was taken to hospital.
Mitchelson said Atwal took swift and decisive action in responding to rising thefts and robberies at the province's Liquor Marts, restoring a sense of safety for employees and customers alike.
He pushed for secure entrances, meaning stores are locked and customers have to show valid photo ID at a security station before being able to shop at Liquor Marts throughout the province, which the Crown corporation says have reduced incidence of theft by about 97 per cent and eliminated robberies.
The release also recognizes Atwal's leadership during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, when Liquor & Lotteries looked for alternatives through online gaming and modernized liquor sales, like new delivery and click and collect options.
Mitchelson also said the Crown corporation was fortunate to have Atwal's keen eye for innovative and collaborative solutions in generating revenue for the government.
Gerry Sul, the executive vice-president of gaming and entertainment with Liquor & Lotteries, will serve as the acting president and chief executive officer during the search for Atwal's successor.