SBJ/March 28-April 3, 2011/People and Pop Culture
Former Rockets executive finds her little piece of Eden
Published March 28, 2011, Page 44
• Previous titles: Vice president of sales, marketing and public relations, Houston Oaks Country Club; vice president of ticket sales and business communications, Houston Rockets
• First job: Bread girl at Piccadilly Cafeteria; sang and danced in the Southern Palace show at Six Flags Over Texas.
• College education: Communications, Baylor University (1983)
• Resides: Houston, with children Ali, 23, and Kirk, 20
• Grew up: Euless, Texas
• Brand most admired: CBS Sports. Great production of the games, but they also bring in the human elements of the players and teams.
• Favorite vacation spot: Italy
• Last book read: “Spoken From the Heart,” by Laura Bush
• Favorite musician/band: Southern rock, Los Lonely Boys and Tim McGraw
• What is the biggest challenge in your new position?
To me it’s selling a club that instead of it having a home course, it really has this worldwide attraction. So it’s just making a transition from a domestic or even local sale to something that is truly for people who have an international interest.
• What is the biggest risk you’ve taken in your career?
It might have been my foray into basketball, although I was hired because of my Rolodex with high-end people. The Rockets were really looking for someone that could take their premium inventory and their luxury inventory to the next level. It was a risk because I didn’t know the industry as well as, of course, I knew the hospitality and club industry. It was a risk because that knowledge wasn’t there of just simple things like yielding inventory in an arena compared to yielding inventory in a hotel.
• What is your biggest professional accomplishment?
Best Practice Award by the NBA for a premium sales process that we put together, I was very proud of that.
• What career advice do you have for people wanting into the sports industry?
The entry point is usually in sales. So if you’re good at something and have a passion for it, it’ll translate to sports. … However you go into it, make sure that passion you have for it is something that’s genuine.
• What is one story you are continuing to watch in the sports world today?
Final Four is coming up and it’s in Houston, so we’re going to have a hundred thousand people and that’s huge for our economy.