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Volume 21 No. 1

People and Pop Culture

The Detroit Tigers promoted Aileen Villarreal to director of media relations.

The Class AAA Pacific Coast League’s Omaha Storm Chasers promoted Andrea Stava to assistant general manager of operations and hired Sean Olson as director of ticket sales. Olson was a convention center sales manager for the Metropolitan Entertainment and Convention Authority.

The Southern Maryland Blue Crabs promoted Courtney Knichel to assistant general manager of marketing and special events, Sean Maher to assistant general manager of operations and business analysis, and Matthew Ammerman to group sales manager.

The Class AA Eastern League’s Akron Aeros promoted Jeremy Heit to assistant director of ticketing and Mitch Cromes to senior manager of group sales, and hired Brock Cline as box office manager and Pete Nugent and Craig Wilson as account executives.

The Miami Heat promoted Andy Elisburg to senior vice president of basketball operations and general manager, Adam Simon to assistant general manager for the Heat and general manager of the Sioux Falls Skyforce, Chad Kammerer to director of NBA scouting and advance scout, and Keith Askins to director of college and pro scouting, and named Rich Fernando executive assistant to the coaches, Eric Glass video coordinator and Tim Hardaway scout and community and corporate liaison.

The Phoenix Coyotes named Avik Dey chief financial officer, Jeff Morander executive vice president of ticket sales and strategy and Mike Humes executive vice president of corporate and suite sales. Dey was co-founder and chief executive officer of Remvest Energy Partners, Morander was vice president of events for the NHL, and Humes was senior vice president and chief revenue officer for the Memphis Grizzlies.


Home Team Marketing hired Michael Reali as vice president of ticketing.

Comcast-Spectacor named Mark DiMaurizio president of FanOne Marketing. DiMaurizio will continue in his role as vice president of technology solutions for Comcast-Spectacor.

Cumulus Media named Jeff Brown vice president. Brown was vice president and general manager at Entercom Boston.

Entercom Boston named Phil Zachary vice president and market manager. Zachary was president and chief operating officer for Curtis Media Group.

Fox Sports promoted Chris Hannan to the newly created position of executive vice president of communications and integration.

YES Network promoted Daniel Guernsey to senior creative director of on-air promotions.

Multiple-Entity Firms
Kroenke Sports & Entertainment promoted Stephen Stieneker to executive vice president and general counsel and named Matt Hutchings to the newly created position of executive vice president and chief operating officer.

Sunrise Sports & Entertainment promoted Michael Yormark to president and chief executive officer, Lou Partenza to executive vice president and chief financial officer and Matthew Sacco to executive vice president, chief communications officer and government affairs strategist

The Madison Square Garden Co. named Michael Lehr senior vice president of team sales and Patrick Jones vice president of corporate hospitality for MSG Sports. Lehr was executive vice president of business development for Sharks Sports & Entertainment and the San Jose Sharks, and Jones was vice president at First Nationwide Title Agency.

USA Luge hired Jim Leahy as chief executive officer. Leahy was executive director of the New Jersey Devils and Trenton Devils.

The U.S. Olympic Committee named Kara Stetler manager of partnership marketing. Stetler was a global marketing partnerships specialist for the NBA.

Chivas USA named Arturo Gálvez president and chief business officer.

The United Soccer Leagues’ Sacramento Republic FC named Brent Sasaki vice president of corporate partnerships. Sasaki was director of business development and corporate partnerships for the Sacramento Kings.

Sporting Goods and Apparel
Nike Golf promoted Daniel Schenk to EMEA marketing director, effective Dec. 1.

Columbia Sportswear named Franco Fogliato senior vice president for Europe. Fogliato was general manager of Europe for Billabong.

IPC Sports Corp. named Michael Beauvais chief operating officer. Beauvais was vice president for Trixter North America.

Sports Commissions and Tourism Boards
The Greater Columbus Sports Commission named Brenda Carter executive assistant and officer manager, Lauren McCarty sales manager, and Kate Wagener sales assistant.

The BB&T Atlanta Open named Eddie Gonzalez tournament director and chief development officer. Gonzalez was vice president of sales and national accounts for Athlon Sports.

Britain’s Lawn Tennis Association named Michael Downey chief executive. Downey was president and chief executive officer of Tennis Canada.

The WTA named Ryan Sandilands regional chief executive officer for Asia-Pacific. Sandilands was managing director of North Asia for Octagon.

Major League Gaming hired Greg Chisholm as chief financial officer and Allen De La Cruz as senior vice president of engineering.

Miami-Dade County named Chris Evans youth sports development manager. Evans was sports program rental coordinator and operations manager for the RDV Sportsplex.

Stats promoted Stephen Byrd and Robert Schur to co-chief operating officers and Brian Kopp to senior vice president of sports solutions.

New York Road Runners named Chris Weiller vice president of media and public relations. Weiller was head of sports marketing for the U.S. Fund for UNICEF.

AECOM named Michael Handelman U.S. north region senior vice president of building and places. Handelman was chief sales officer for HNTB Architecture.

Davey O’Brien Foundation Executive Director Danielle Moorman stepped down from the position.

Awards and Boards
Adidas AG named Roland Auschel to its board of directors.

Keeneland named Ian Banwell, Luther Deaton Jr., Pope McLean Jr., Daisy Phipps Pulito and Bill Shively to its advisory board of directors.

People news
To have your personnel announcements included in the People section, please send information and photos to Brandon McClung at 120 W. Morehead St., Suite 310, Charlotte, NC 28202, or email them to Electronic photos must be a jpg or tiff file for Macintosh, 2.25 inches wide at 300 dpi. Color only, please. News items may also be sent via fax to (704) 973-1401. If you have questions, call (704) 973-1425.

ACC and ESPN ready for basketball

Coaches and commentators gathered at ESPNU headquarters in Charlotte on Oct. 16 for the ACC’s basketball media day: Steve Donahue of Boston College, Mark Turgeon of Maryland, commentator Jay Williams, Mike Brey of Notre Dame, Jeff Bzdelik of Wake Forest, Mike Krzyzewski of Duke, commentator Sean Farnham, Jim Boeheim of Syracuse, Brad Brownell of Clemson, Jim Larranaga of Miami, reporter Andy Katz, ESPNU’s Dan Margulis, ACC Commissioner John Swofford, commentator Adrian Branch, Jamie Dixon of Pittsburgh, Mark Gottfried of North Carolina State, James Johnson of Virginia Tech, Leonard Hamilton of Florida State, Tony Bennett of Virginia, Brian Gregory of Georgia Tech, Roy Williams of North Carolina, commentator Dino Gaudio, and ESPN’s Paul Biancardi.

NBA China, phone brand ZTE make a deal

NBA China CEO David Shoemaker and Ye Weimin of Chinese smartphone brand ZTE shake hands at an Oct. 15 news conference in Beijing announcing their sponsorship deal. In the background are the NBA’s Heidi Ueberroth and David Stern.

  Octagon’s de Picciotto salutes event director

Octagon President Phil de Picciotto honors Toshio Noji, Toray Pan Pacific Open tournament director, for 30 years of leadership at the Octagon-owned WTA event, along with the event’s executive staff. On hand Sept. 25 were Michiko Noji, Toshio Noji, Naoki Shimada, de Picciotto and Katsumi Saito.

Cowboying up

Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones and NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell talk to Cowboys season-ticket holders in a fan forum before the Cowboys-Washington Redskins game Oct. 13 at AT&T Stadium.
Photo by: AP IMAGES

They are Ironmen

World Triathlon Corp. / Ironman CEO Andrew Messick is flanked by former Super Bowl MVP Hines Ward and celebrity chef Gordon Ramsay, both of whom finished at the GoPro Ironman World Championship on Oct. 12 in Kailua-Kona, Hawaii.

Pegulas saluted at Penn State

Penn State President Rodney Erickson presents benefactors Kim and Terry Pegula with a framed uniform at a dedication ceremony for the Pegula Ice Arena on Oct. 11.

Seattle scene

On hand at CenturyLink Field last month getting ready for a big weekend of Washington State football and Seattle Sounders soccer were Suzanne Lavender, Peter McLoughlin and Adam Link of the Seahawks and Sounders.

Toshiba to supply Charlotte boards

The Class AAA International League’s Charlotte Knights announced Oct. 9 that Toshiba will supply the video boards and concourse displays at BB&T Ballpark, to open in April. From left: Toshiba’s Chris Applegate, the Knights’ Dan Rajkowski and TSE’s David Frost.


Executives from NASCAR visited the Charlotte headquarters of SportsBusiness Journal/Daily on Oct. 15 to discuss their vision for the future of the sport. ABOVE: Eric Nyquist, VP of strategic development, and Brian France, CEO and chairman. BELOW: Steve Phelps, SVP and CMO.

Recognizing a Contribution

ABOVE: Women’s Sports Foundation founder Billie Jean King presented WNBA President Laurel Richie with the Contribution Award named after her at the foundation’s 34th annual Salute to Women in Sports Awards at Cipriani Wall Street on Oct. 16.
BELOW: King with foundation CEO Kathryn Olson and ESPN’s Hannah Storm.

New member of 49ers Hall of Fame

Former San Francisco 49ers front-office executive John McVay was inducted in the Edward J. DeBartolo Sr.  49ers Hall of Fame on Oct. 12. With him is 49ers CEO Jed York.

The legacy of 1984

IOC member and LA84 Foundation President Anita DeFrantz accepts the Steve Patterson Award for Excellence in Sports Philanthropy from Carlette Patterson on Oct. 16.

Fight night

HBO Sports President Ken Hershman and former boxer Micky Ward at the New York premiere of the HBO documentary “Legendary Nights: The Tale of Gatti-Ward” on Oct. 16

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.


What I Like …

McGowan’s Blazers open the season with a new name on their home.

An insight: Actions speak louder than words.

An influential person in my career: Tim Leiweke.

An out-of-the-box idea: Hyperloop.

A timeless idea: Hand-written thank you cards.

A business deal: Moda Center naming rights.

A sports facility: Staples Center, Anfield Stadium.

President and CEO
Portland Trail Blazers

Where I'm from: Carlisle, Pa.
Where I Went to School: B.A., University of Delaware.
My First Job: Grocery store bagger.

A sports event: Stanley Cup Final, Los Angeles Kings’ clinching game, June 11, 2012.

A strategy: Hire great people — and give them room to be great.

A hire: Adam Silver.

A brand: Nike.

A trend: Analytics and big data.


An innovation: TiVo/DVR.

A pro league or team business initiative: Seattle Sounders’ GM retention vote by season-ticket holders.

A story that bears watching: Ed O’Bannon NCAA lawsuit.

An idea or invention I wish I had thought of: Google.


A fantasy job: Rancher.

What I Like about …

Sports: One of the few unpredictable things in life.

Sports business: The ability to bring communities together to create lasting memories.

Sports media: Willingness to tell our story, good or bad.

Sports technology: Ability to expose our brands to a wider audience.

The future of sports business: Innovation and sophistication of leaders in the industry improves daily.

Sports fans: The personal investment and commitment they give to their favorite team.

My job: It doesn’t feel like a job.

What I Would Like To …

Change: Relying too heavily on email to interact and maintain important relationships.

Change in what I do: Fewer meetings and more time to strategize.

See: My kids grow up happy and healthy.

See more of in sports business: People starting their sports careers in the ticket department.

See less of in sports: Seemingly never-ending discussion about performance-enhancing drugs.

See less of in sports business: Division between the team side and the business side.

See different: Treatment of the greats from the past; they deserve better.

Eliminate: Negativity on message boards and social media.


What I Like …

That would surprise those who know me: In high school, I wanted to be a police officer.

Above all else: Family: Susan, Ryan, Kyle.

Landon Donovan
Hero: My dad.

Players: Damian Lillard, Landon Donovan, Dustin Brown, Cristiano Ronaldo, Tim Duncan.

City: San Francisco.

Possession: Stanley Cup championship ring.

Memento: Khata (Tibetan scarf) given to me by the Dalai Lama.

Time of year: Summer, because I get to spend more time with my kids.

Author: Jim Collins.

Magazines: Portland Monthly, Sunset, Wine Spectator.

Chore: Taking the trash down a long, long, long driveway to the curb.

Hobbies: Trail running, wine tasting, fly fishing, mountain biking, food.

Trip: Argentina.

Movies: “Into the Wild,” “Rushmore,” “Goodfellas.”

TV: “Portlandia,” “Man vs. Wild,” “Chopped,” “Wild Alaska.”

Concerts: Pearl Jam, Avett Brothers, Bob Dylan, Mumford & Sons, Willie Nelson.

Artists: Melissa Graves Brown, Chad McGowan (my brother).

Food: Cheeseburger with french fries.

Dessert: Chocolate milkshake.

Drink: Water.

Scent: Whatever my wife picks out …

Vacation spot: Sun Valley, Idaho.

Cars: Necessary to get from Point A to Point B (not a big car guy).

Quote: “All mankind is divided into three classes: those that are immovable, those that are movable and those that move.” Benjamin Franklin.

No Olympic marketing challenge is greater than the transition from a Summer Games to a Winter Games. Marketers have less than 18 months to develop and launch a campaign. Sandy Uridge, senior director of integrated consumer promotions at Kellogg Co., is putting the finishing touches on that brand’s efforts for the 2014 Sochi Games, with plans to launch the program next week.


With professional sports, it’s all about Q Scores. With Olympians, a lot of times consumers don’t know them at all. It’s more about the story than that they’re the most well-known. What’s charming about them is how consumers connect with the fact that these athletes have worked so hard to get to the Games. They connect with those personal stories, and that’s what we try to bring to consumers — that connection.

Winter vs. Summer:
The “100 days out” occurs around Halloween, and the retail selling season is focused on many other things [before a Winter Games], like holidays, football and March Madness, whereas for a Summer Games, you start in April and have a much clearer window.

The best ideas:
We have worked very hard to build an idea culture. The best testament to that is that our idea for our Olympic campaign actually came through a process called “pitch day.” That’s where anyone from innovation to marketing to our research team to any of our agencies can come in and pitch ideas to a panel of judges. … The whole idea of “From Great Starts Come Great Things” [the company’s Olympics campaign] came from our first pitch day.

Changes in Olympic marketing: Mostly, if you’re with a CPG company, that’s related to how we’re able to affect the situation with our retail customers. The USOC has been able to pull together CPG companies and drive scale at retail. It used to be retailers would say, “The Olympics are every two years. People are at home watching TV and not in my store. Why should I give you space?” The idea [USOC CMO] Lisa Baird and her team came up with to bring together P&G, Smucker’s and others at retail is making a huge difference.

Admirable brands: I really like Nike. They’re brave. They do some unexpected things. The TV spot from 2012 and “Find Your Greatness” was amazing. It was unexpected but so right for their brand.

— Tripp Mickle