SBD/Issue 172/Sports Industrialists

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  • USA Track & Field Announces New Roles For Jill Geer, Ivan Cropper

    Longtime Staff Members Geer (l), Cropper
    Beginning New Roles For USATF
    USA Track & Field (USATF) announced today new roles for longtime staff members JILL GEER and IVAN CROPPER. Geer, who has been Dir of Communications since '00, has been named Chief Public Affairs Officer. Cropper, who has been Dir of Marketing since '01, has been named Senior Dir of Marketing & Communications. Geer will continue to serve as the organization's spokesperson and oversee the organization's corporate communications, crisis communications and liaison to USATF partners in the Olympic movement. She will be one of six members of the USATF executive team reporting directly to CEO DOUG LOGAN. Cropper's new title follows a reorganization that combined the marketing and communications departments. He will oversee both departments and report to COO MIKE MCNEES.

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  • Executive Transactions

    Fleischer Hired
    By USOC
    The USOC has hired Ari Fleischer Sports Communications President ARI FLEISCHER as a communications consultant. Fleischer "will not be a spokesman for the organization but will counsel it on communications issues and support the USOC in its search" for a new Chief Communications Officer to replace DARRYL SEIBEL. The USOC also has hired a search firm to help replace Seibel, who is due to leave June 1 (SPORTSBUSINESS JOURNAL, 5/25 issue). Meanwhile, MLB did not renew its contract with Fleischer this year. MLB President & COO BOB DUPUY: "We appreciate the work he has done for us, but have fewer Washington issues, so we decided to step back" (THE DAILY).

    GIANT DEPARTURE: MLB Giants Enterprises President PAT GALLAGHER will leave the organization on June 30 to pursue other opportunities. Gallagher, who joined the team in '76, served as Senior VP/Business Operations for more than 20 years, where he oversaw various aspects of the non-baseball business for the club. Gallagher also played a lead role in the development of AT&T Park. Gallagher assumed his current role in ’00 (Giants). In S.F., Henry Schulman writes Gallagher was the “brains behind the Croix de Candlestick pins and Crazy Crab mascot” (S.F. CHRONICLE, 5/27).

    SEDAN PARKING: Universal Sports, NBC and Intermedia Partner's Olympic and amateur sports channel, has hired Sedan Communications to handle its PR. GREG HUGHES and AMY SORRELLS will be the primary consultants for the upstart TV channel. Hughes spent more than 19 years with Turner Broadcasting System, Inc., and Sorrells spent four years at Fox Cable Network before becoming an independent communications consultant (Tripp Mickle, SportsBusiness Journal).

    MARCH OF THE PENGUINS: The Penguins officially named DAVID PEART VP/Business Partnerships. Peart most recently served as 49ers VP/Sales & Marketing from '04-08, after previously serving as Texans VP/Business Development and MLB Rangers and Stars Assistant VP/Sponsorship Sales (Penguins). Meanwhile, the Penguins promoted Dir of Hockey Administration JASON BOTTERILL to Assistant GM following the Wild naming former Assistant GM CHUCK FLETCHER as GM (PITTSBURGH POST-GAZETTE, 5/23).

    EXECS: MSG named Schottenstein Luxury Group Senior VP/Licensing GAIL STERN Senior VP/Merchandising & Licensing. Stern will serve as strategic leader of product, licensing and retail programs, reporting to MSG Sports President SCOTT O'NEIL (MSG)....The Dodgers named Broncos Senior Dir of Special Projects and AFL Colorado Crush Exec VP MICHAEL YOUNG Chief Revenue Officer (Dodgers)....The AHL Springfield Falcons promoted VP/Business Operations BOB OLIVER to Senior VP & Assistant Governor, Dir of Sales & Service CHRIS THOMPSON to VP/Business Development and Ticket Sales Exec & broadcaster MIKE KELLY to Manager of Group Sales & broadcaster (Falcons).

    Do you have an executive announcement? If so, please send to editorial@sportsbusinessdaily.com.

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  • Names In The News

    Cuban Sits With SEC Officials To
    Discuss Pending Insider Trading Suit
    SEC officials and lawyers for Mavericks Owner MARK CUBAN yesterday met in federal court in Dallas "about whether an insider-trading lawsuit" against Cuban "should be thrown out." The judge overseeing the case has yet to rule, but a "decision could come within two weeks" (DALLAS MORNING NEWS, 5/27). The AP's Danny Robbins noted Cuban yesterday was "uncharacteristically reserved" at the hearing, and declined comment afterward (AP, 5/26). Fox Business judicial analyst ANDREW NAPOLITANO noted Cuban has been very critical of the government bailout program and said, "We also know that the government can be extremely subjective when it decides who to go after for SEC violations" ("Happy Hour," Fox Business, 5/26). 

    GREECE LIGHTNING: In Orlando, Chris Harry cited sources as saying that Univ. of Florida G NICK CALATHES last week signed a deal to play for Greek basketball club Panathinaikos. Sources said that the deal will pay Calathes, who has dual U.S. and Greece citizenship, around $1.1M annually, "in addition to providing him with a home, car and tax credits, making for a total package commensurate to what the NBA rookie salary scale provides a late-lottery selection." With his Greek heritage and citizenship, "there should be endorsement opportunities aplenty" for Calathes (ORLANDO SENTINEL, 5/24).

    IN THE SPOTLIGHT: Scenes for the upcoming movie "MONEYBALL" will be shot at Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum in July. A's officials "haven't received concrete details on what scenes will be shot" at the ballpark, but A's VP/Stadium Operations David Rinetti said that "footage of actual A's home games probably will be shot" (OAKLAND TRIBUNE, 5/27)....A camera crew Sunday filmed HER energy drink CEO BRETT JACOBSON at the Indianapolis 500, where his company sponsored Alex Lloyd's No. 99 entry, "for a television reality series." Details of the show are unknown, but Jacobson said that "an announcement is coming" (INDIANAPOLIS STAR, 5/26).

    NAMES: Senators Owner EUGENE MELNYK yesterday agreed to "show up in person or by proxy" to Biovail's annual meeting tomorrow, ending the "ongoing feud with the pharmaceutical giant he used to run" (NATIONAL POST, 5/27)....VANOC earlier this month filed a lawsuit in B.C. Supreme Court against Winnipeg-based Roadtrips "in an effort to stop black-market ticket sales" for the '10 Vancouver Olympics. VANOC claims that Roadtrips is "offering tours that include tickets to the Games that they don't have a legal right to sell" (CP, 5/25)....Former SMI President & CEO Humpy Wheeler will be the featured storyteller at the Charlotte Folk Society's monthly meeting on June 12, where he will "share stories about growing up in the mill town" of Belmont, North Carolina, and the "early days of NASCAR" (CHARLOTTE OBSERVER, 5/24)....Wild Owner CRAIG LEIPOLD has a 10-year lease on a suite at the St. Paul Hotel (ST. PAUL PIONEER PRESS, 5/23)....Beach volleyball player KERRI WALSH and her husband, beach volleyball player CASEY JENNINGS, Friday welcomed their first child, JOSEPH (PEOPLE.com, 5/23).

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