SACRAMENTO (CBS13) – The Sacramento Republic President and founder is leaving the team.

Warren Smith joined Energy FC as a Senior Adviser. Energy FC is the USL franchise in Oklahoma City.

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Energy FC made the announcement Tuesday, saying Smith will serve in various capacities, specifically “supporting the front office staff in their execution of the 2018 campaign and in assisting the club with a solution that will allow it to play in a ‘soccer specific stadium’ for the 2019 season and beyond.”

The Sacramento Republic FC said Smith will continue to act as a Senior Adviser for the club. In that role he will be involved in community initiatives, stadium operations, and fan engagement.

“It has been, and will continue to be, an honor to work alongside the talented SRFC staff as well as our devoted fans to build this club from the ground up for our Indomitable City,” said Smith. “Together as a region, we have already accomplished so much and we are only just getting started. I love and believe in Sacramento and our abilities when we are unified in our fight for our city. Kevin Nagle deserves an immense amount of credit for leading Sacramento’s MLS bid and I am confident that we will accomplish our collective goal of bringing MLS here in the near future.”

“Warren’s contributions to Republic FC, and to the City of Sacramento as a whole, cannot be overstated,” said Kevin Nagle, Chairman & CEO of Republic FC. “Thanks to Warren’s vision and unwavering commitment, Republic FC is a leading franchise and USL champion, and we are on our way to achieving our goal of bringing Major League Soccer to Sacramento.”

The Tower Bridge Battalion tweeted: “Thank you, Warren. From the bottom of our hearts. You helped awaken a beautiful movement in our city. May it continue for many years to come. Good luck with OKC, but not too much. #NoRepublicNoPary

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Smith founded the Sacramento Republic FC in 2012. The team played its first USL season in 2014 and won the championship.

Before joining the Republic, Smith co-founded and served as Executive Vice President of the Sacramento River Cats.

Smith’s departure comes as Sacramento works to bring a Major League Soccer club to the city. In April, CEO Kevin Nagle told CBS13 the team is working with three to five groups to improve its bid.  Sacramento is one of three finalists competing for an MLS team. Cincinnati and Detroit are the others. Nashville was awarded a team in December.

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MLS Commissioner Don Garber previously said Sacramento “has some things to finalize with their ownership group.”

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