North Carolina senator's top aide now CEO of Carolina Hurricanes parent company

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — A top aide to a powerful North Carolina state legislator was named Thursday as the chief executive officer of the parent company of the Carolina Hurricanes.

Hurricanes owner Tom Dundon announced the hiring of Brian Fork, who has worked for state Senate leader Phil Berger since 2018, and as his chief of staff since late 2020.

Fork, a Raleigh native and previous private-practice attorney, will oversee all business units of Hurricanes Holdings LLC, including the team, PNC Arena and the mixed-use real estate development plans surrounding the venue, a Hurricanes news release said. The development also includes a planned sportsbook.

As chief of staff, Fork has been heavily involved in development of key legislation related to the state budget, energy production and health care reform, the Hurricanes said.

“Brian has a proven track record of negotiating, making deals, and finding solutions,” Dundon said in the release. “We want to set the standard in sports and entertainment, and Brian has the background to help us reach that goal.”

Fork's hiring comes a few days after Dundon named investment firm president Doug Warf as Hurricanes Holdings president.

The busy offseason for the Hurricanes also has included the hiring of Eric Tulsky as general manager after longtime GM Don Waddell left for Columbus.

In a separate news release, Berger praised Fork: "His ability to build trusting relationships with legislators and staff members in the General Assembly is a model for us all to emulate.”

Berger will announce a new chief of staff in the coming weeks, his office said.