SBD/February 17, 2014/Leagues and Governing Bodies

Head Of Screen Actors Guild Said To Be Top Choice For NBPA Exec Dir Job

White is seen as the front-runner over attorney Michele Roberts
SAG-AFTRA Exec Dir David White has "emerged as the frontrunner to replace" former NBPA Exec Dir Billy Hunter, according to sources cited by Adrian Wojnarowski of YAHOO SPORTS. Sources said that NBPA President Chris Paul and the Exec Committee have "interviewed White about the position" (SPORTS.YAHOO.com, 2/14). CBSSPORTS.com's Ken Berger reported the Exec Committee "met for 2 1/2 hours on Saturday to interview finalists for the job of replacing Hunter." The meeting was "attended by about 30 players," less than 10% of the union membership. Sources said that there "essentially are two leading candidates," with White "being the strong front runner." The other finalist is Skadden Arps trial attorney Michele Roberts, who if selected would be the "first woman to lead the union in any of the four major North American sports leagues." The NBPA "recorded the sessions with the two finalists and their interactions with committee members and other players in the room." The videos "will be burned on DVDs and delivered to all 30 player reps." Certain "powerful" player agents have been "frustrated with the search," overseen since September by Chicago-based exec search firm Riley Partners. Heat F and NBPA Secretary-Treasurer James Jones said that the firm has "considered more than 200 candidates." Multiple agents said that they "have candidates in mind who have not been considered." A source said that at least one player on the periphery of the search "believes the search should be started over and a new list of candidates should be developed, to be voted on at the NBPA's summer meeting -- when players are not in the middle of a season" (CBSSPORTS.com, 2/15).

A WHITER SHADE OF PALE: In L.A., Richard Verrier noted the NBPA is "said to be interested in White in part because of his success in bringing stability" to the SAG after the '09 firing of his predecessor Doug Allen, who formerly served as NFLPA Assistant Exec Dir. White's departure "would be a blow" to the SAG (L.A. TIMES, 2/15).
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