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Volume 21 No. 1

People and Pop Culture

Showing off signs of success

AEG COO and CFO Dan Beckerman and AEG President and CEO Tim Leiweke pose with the AEG Wall of Champions trophy display at The Home Depot Center before the Los Angeles Galaxy’s MLS Cup game against the Houston Dynamo on Dec. 1.

Awards and honors from NFF

At the 55th National Football Foundation annual Awards Dinner and news conference at the Waldorf-Astoria in New York City on Dec. 4:
From left: College Football Hall of Fame inductee Jimmy Johnson and NFF board members Robert Kraft, owner of the New England Patriots, and T. Boone Pickens, chairman and CEO of BP Capital.
Below, from left: ESPN Executive Chairman George Bodenheimer, Distinguished American Award recipient; Burke Magnus, ESPN SVP for college programing and Legacy Award recipient; and ESPN broadcaster Rece Davis, the dinner’s master of ceremonies.
Photos by: GENE BOYARS

Sports Broadcasting Hall of Fame

The Sports Broadcasting Hall of Fame inducted its class of 2012 during a ceremony Dec. 11 at the New York Hilton Hotel. Inductees included (at left) former Fox Sports Media Group Vice Chairman Ed Goren and former NFL Commissioner Paul Tagliabue. Other inductees were ESPN’s George Bodenheimer, audio pioneer Ray Dolby, NFL commentator Frank Gifford, NBC cameraman Cory Leible, NBC operations and engineering chief Jack Weir and broadcaster Jack Whitaker. Also attending the ceremony, (below) ESPN EVP Sean Bratches and CBS Sports Chairman Sean McManus. 

Houston ready for role as All-Star host

The NBA and Reliant Energy on Dec. 10 announced that Reliant will support several major events during NBA All-Star 2013 in Houston. On hand to help celebrate the start of NBA All-Star Jam Session ticket sales were (from left) Houston Rockets guard James Harden, Rockets CEO Tad Brown, Houston Mayor Annise Parker, Reliant CMO Karen Jones, and Rockets hall of famer Clyde Drexler.

NBA execs, Cornell alums on the dais

NBA executives, all of whom are Cornell alumni, participated in a panel discussion on the business of basketball at the Cornell Club in New York City on Nov. 28. From left: EVP Mark Tatum; SVP Rachel Jacobson; VP Susan Schroeder; Todd Jacobson, SVP of community relations; Linda Choong, SVP of global retail operations; and Chris Granger, EVP of team marketing and business operations.

In the spotlight at UMass

Peter Carlisle, Octagon managing director of Olympics and action sports, delivers the Sport Innovators keynote address, “Marketing an Olympic Icon: Behind the Business of a Global Sports Superstar,” at the University of Massachusetts Amherst Campus Center Auditorium. Carlisle was the Mark H. McCormack executive-in-residence at the Isenberg School of Management Nov. 27-29.

Please submit photos for review of industry conferences, parties, product launches and openings showcasing the people and personalities at the event. Include the event date, location, names/titles of those featured along with credit information. The photo specifications are as follows: 300dpi, tiff, jpeg or eps color images. Submit digital photos for review at: or send color prints to: Faces & Places, c/o Street & Smith’s SportsBusiness Journal, 120 W. Morehead St., Suite 310, Charlotte, NC 28202.


Athletic Director,
University of Denver

I am very fortunate to have been so truly blessed. During the holiday season the gift I most look forward to receiving is time to devote to my favorite charities and to catching up over coffee with friends and colleagues — I view both as treasures.
As for giving, each year my husband, Gary, and I look forward to presenting a special Denver Pioneer gift to the staff. We are so proud to be associated with the university and we truly appreciate the hard work and dedication of all who make DU Athletics great.


Daytona International Speedway

An iPad or iPad Mini for my wife. It doesn’t work anymore “sharing” the iPad I received last Christmas.
An iPhone for my 11-year-old son. Although peer pressure doesn’t usually work on me, I had no idea that every sixth-grader except my son already had one.
The book “Go Like Hell,” by A.J. Baime, to anyone with an interest in motorsports. One of the best books I have read.

Executive vice president
and sports group president,
Time Inc.

I have all the electronics I need and am completely plugged in on all kinds of levels. The gift I want to receive and give this holiday is to take some time to be unplugged, so I can look in the eye and talk to people. That will give us some perspective on what’s important in business and what’s important at home.


Vice president of television and emerging media,

I’m hoping to receive a few things: a new travel bag; some apparel from my alma mater, the No. 1-ranked Indiana Hoosiers; and a book about Lamar Hunt by Michael MacCambridge. (I read one of his previous NFL books, “America’s Game”).

Vice president of social marketing,

For me: This year I’ll beg Santa for an affordable cloud storage solution that Santa can pay once and I’ll be able to back up all my photos and media for life! I’m also addicted to photo filter/editing apps like Camera+, iPhoto, ToyCamera, Over and Whims to capture the holiday fun and make it into memes for the family to share.
For my 4-year-old: Kids’ ski boots that adjust full sizes to grow with her feet, bongos, and a GoPro HD helmet camera so she can document her years learning to ski.


Senior vice president of operations and administration,
CBS Sports Network
Gifts I’ll be buying:  Beats studio headphones, “NBA 2K13” for Xbox, iPhone 5 (for my 11-year-old son).
Gifts I hope to receive: Microsoft Surface (in January when the Professional version comes out).  I’m looking forward to a tablet with a usable keyboard! Also, “Proof of Heaven:  A Neurosurgeon’s Journey Into the Afterlife,” by Dr. Eben Alexander.


Tournament director,
Travelers Championship

What to receive: I am a sucker for anything from Lululemon (and I am not afraid to admit it). I am also excited about the Nespresso Pixie machine that will be coming to the house. New albums that were on the holiday list were the latest from Mumford & Sons and the Avett Brothers.
What to buy: Lego will do quite well this year due to what we are getting for the kids, and my wife should enjoy the items from the Sundance Catalog and her iPad Mini.


President and COO,

I’m a big fan of the Rolling Stones, and hopefully the new three-disc greatest hits package, “Grrr!,” shows up under my tree this Christmas.

Executive producer and vice president of production,
CBS Sports

Hoping for the Garmin Approach S3 watch that displays golf course yardages, although I doubt it will help my game. I am a bit of an audiophile and would like the Beats Pro headphones. John Grisham and Michael Connelly are two of my favorite authors. Connelly has a new book out that I am looking forward to called “The Black Box.”
I will be getting jewelry for my wife — you can never go wrong with that. My son just graduated from college and is starting to get into golf. I plan on getting him some golf equipment.

Athletic director,
Grand Valley State University

Holiday gifts I’d like to receive: I’d like to have all of the VHS tapes I have of my college basketball playing days converted into DVDs and then to digital. I’ve already converted them from 16mm film to VHS tapes. I wonder what I’ll have to convert them to in the next 30 years. I’d also like to receive any book by Jon Meacham, having just read “Thomas Jefferson: The Art of Power.”
Gifts I’m giving: I’ve already given each of our coaches the book “Lead … for God’s Sake!” by Todd Gongwer, as well as “Wooden on Leadership,” by John Wooden and Steve Jamison.

Vice president of public relations,

I am on the eternal search for the ultimate sports workout headphones. I can never be satisfied. I continue to look for the best pair. Hopefully this Hanukkah that pair will arrive.

Executive vice president of sports marketing,
GMR Marketing

I’m asking for a big flat-screen TV and a Bose system for my porch so I can sit outside every weekend, have a couple drinks, grill out, play with my dogs and watch replays of South Carolina beating Clemson by the combined score of 124-54 over the last four years. I’m also asking for a road bike to undo everything I’ll do to myself while sitting on the porch eating, drinking and watching TV.

Indiana Pacers general manager Kevin Pritchard was promoted to his current job in June. The Indiana native and former general manager of the Portland Trail Blazers can now add “author” to his list of job titles, as well, with the recent publication of “Help The Helper: Building a Culture of Extreme Teamwork,” co-written by John Eliot (Portfolio Hardcover). Pritchard shares his ideas on how lessons learned in basketball can be used in business leadership.

Photo by: AP IMAGES
Are you willing to do anything to make a company better? Great teams have people who are willing to sacrifice, engage in the business, and look around and see what is missing.

About the book’s title:
[It] is a basketball defensive term that applies to business and to life. On great teams, defensive help is one step away, with everyone helping each other. One of the biggest things is that we all want to be bigger than something than just ourselves. We all feel great when we know we are accomplishing more as a group, rather than just as individuals. We believe that is how you become more valuable. When I was a general manager of a minor league team, I had to do everything. You don’t just wear one hat … You have to figure out and identify places where you can really help the organization.

How that’s helped him do his job: One of the big things that you want to do is create an atmosphere of unselfishness. I enjoy the tough times. It is because you have to look in the mirror and you have to figure out who is in it for the right reasons versus the wrong reasons. As a player, there were a lot of times I didn’t want to go block out a big man, but to be a great team, you have to do these things. If you create an atmosphere of toughness and of understanding difficulties, you have a chance to be successful.

Business vs. basketball for an NBA team: It is about having a foundation of trust in that we are all after the same thing, but that is judged in different ways. Some teams feel good about making the playoffs while others are all about winning championships. You have to feel good about your organizational culture. It is about having open lines of communication. You have two pulls: One is trying to fill the building and generate as much revenue as possible; the other is all about basketball. There is a happy medium between the two if there is trust between both sides.

One key leadership rule:
There is a thing we call The 30-Minute Rule. If I have thought about something for more than 30 minutes, then we owe it to ourselves to figure it out.