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Phoenix Suns CEO Rick Welts resigns to spend more time with gay partner

Phoenix — Phoenix Suns CEO Rick Welts, the first openly gay executive in professional sports in the United States, is resigning to get his "personal and professional lives better aligned."

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Rick Welts 
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"They've probably never been aligned," he told "I'm 58 years old and it's time to do that.

Welts came out of the closet four months ago. In the past year, he told the paper, he started a new relationship. That partner lives in Sacramento, Calif.

Welts said the Suns didn't blink when he came out of the closet.

This has been an incredibly personally gratifying experience, going through that and reaching a different part of my life where I'm able to share 100 percent of my life with people I work with instead of 95 percent," Welts said.

He said he isn't being pushed out, and doesn't have another job lined up. He might do a speaking tour.

"This isn't one of those departures to see greener pastures. It really is completely a personal situation. These guys have been tremendously accommodating and any other inference than that is absolutely crazy," he said.

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