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La Madeleine announced today that CEO Wally Doolin will be leaving the company effective November 1, 2004, to accept the chairman and CEO appointments with casual Italian chain Buca, Inc. Doolin was appointed CEO of la Madeleine in March 2002 and is credited with developing the company's strategic plan for growth, including the recent opening of its newest unit since 1998.
"It is with mixed emotions that I leave la Madeleine," Doolin said in a statement. "It is a great brand with great people. I am confident that the business is well positioned for growth and I will remain as both an investor and board member of the company."
Jean-Roch Vachon, chairman, will assume the role of interim CEO while a search is initiated for Doolin's successor. Vachon has held chairman and CEO roles in various retail and foodservice industries since 1982. He is also a shareholder in the company.