Columbus Crew make two front-office hires from Toronto FC, eye second team

The Columbus Crew have added two executives from Toronto FC, further building out their front office under president and general manager Tim Bezbatchenko. 

Corey Wray will become the Crew’s assistant general manager after serving as Toronto’s assistant general manager of team operations and strategy – all with an eye on beginning a second team. The other hire is Jaime McMillan as Columbus’ vice president of soccer administration and operations, with her prior role in Toronto being the senior director of administration and operations.

Before coming to Columbus in 2019, Bezbatchenko worked with both new hires while he was the senior vice president of soccer operations & general manager in Toronto from 2013-18, where he and his staff helped transform TFC's fortunes and win MLS Cup 2017.

Wray is expected to shape Columbus’ roster, assist with player development, help create and manage a second team at a to-be-determined competition/age level. He’ll also over oversee the day-to-day administration and operations of that second team.

“His experience in partnering with local clubs and affiliates, both domestically and internationally will be a huge asset to our club,” Bezbatchenko said in a team release. “Additionally, as MLS begins to oversee the different tiers of player development, Corey’s new role will be pivotal in helping us strengthen the Crew’s player development program, which potentially includes a team to bridge the academy and the first team as we work towards strengthening our path to the professional level in MLS.”

McMillan will work with Crew administration and management in non-technical areas, specifically around soccer operations administration, facilities and budgeting. She’ll also focus on player and staff administration, academy administration and other support areas.

“We are thrilled to welcome Jaime McMillan to the club,” Bezbatchenko said in a team release. “Jaime played a critical role in the front office, simultaneously managing and executing high level projects during her time with Toronto FC as it became a perennial MLS Cup contender, and I know she will be a great asset to the Crew as we continue to grow our ambitions and elevate the club in this new era.”

A second team would represent continued investment from the Crew, as they’re slated to open a new downtown stadium in 2021. The Crew are also building the OhioHealth Performance Center, a 42,000 square foot facility.