General Manager, Brian Ohl, set to retire on June 30, 2024

June 24, 2024

After more than two decades of dedicated service, Brian Ohl, the General Manager at Budweiser Gardens for arena operator Oak View Group, announces his retirement, effective June 30, 2024.


Oak View Group, managers and operators of Budweiser Gardens promoted Kelly Austin, who has been the arena’s Assistant General Manager and Director of Marketing since 2015, to succeed Ohl as General Manager, beginning on July 1, 2024, ensuring a seamless transition to new leadership and continued growth for the venue.


“Brian has been an integral part of the arena’s success since its inception,” said Peter Luukko, Co-Chair, Oak View Group. “Throughout his more than 20 years leading our efforts at Budweiser Gardens, Brian played a vital role in establishing Budweiser Gardens as one of the premier sports and entertainment venues in Ontario, hosting a wide array of world-class events and performances. The venue’s success is a true testament to Brian’s passion, leadership, and ability to engage with partners, sponsors, and the community.”


“We’re fortunate to have Kelly step in as our new General Manager, added Luukko. “She has done a tremendous job in marketing and booking Budweiser Gardens and worked closely with Brian over the past decade. We are excited for the future of Budweiser Gardens with Kelly leading our onsite team.”


Under Ohl’s leadership, Budweiser Gardens became a landmark of civic pride for Londoners and consistently delivers unforgettable experiences to patrons while maintaining an outstanding reputation within the live entertainment industry. Ohl’s visionary leadership and unwavering dedication have been instrumental in shaping the venue’s identity and ensuring its continued success over the years.


During his time as General Manager, Ohl was instrumental in bringing high profile events to Budweiser Gardens including the 2005 and 2014 Memorial Cups, World Figure Skating Championships in 2013 and the 2019 Juno Awards. Additionally, Ohl also booked legendary artists such as Prince, David Bowie, Bon Jovi, and The Who. Many Londoners will also remember Tommy Hunter’s Farewell concert and the Tragically Hip’s final show at the venue on Aug. 8, 2016.


Reflecting on his remarkable tenure, Ohl expressed gratitude for the opportunity to serve as General Manager of Budweiser Gardens and shared his heartfelt appreciation for the support of his colleagues, staff, and the community.


“I’ve been fortunate to work with a host of great people over the past 20+ years; the Knights organization, the city administration and Council, Budweiser Gardens staff, entertainment industry colleagues, Oak View Group leaders and the local media,” said Ohl. “Due to Council’s forward thinking, the future for the venue is exciting; it is poised for great growth in the coming years.  It’s time someone else take the helm and lead it into the future, and there is no one more qualified and capable than Kelly. She understands the importance of the venue to the city and its residents.” 


London Knights General Manager, Mark Hunter, shared his sentiments about Ohl’s retirement and Austin’s promotion; “On behalf of the London Knights organization, I would like to wish Brian all the best in his retirement and thank him for 20 plus years of great partnership” remarked Hunter. “Brian and I have always had a great relationship and I appreciate the terrific work that he has done at the venue and the support he has given our franchise. I am also excited to work with Kelly in her new role as General Manager. Her commitment and enthusiasm make her a valuable asset to our continued success.”