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Volume 21 No. 2

People and Pop Culture

The New York Mets named Will Carafello to the newly created position of social media director. Carafello was marketing director for the New Jersey Devils.

The independent Pacific Association’s San Rafael Pacifics named Josh Jackson assistant general manager. Jackson was media relations and marketing manager of the Visalia Rawhide.

The Washington Nationals named Amanda Comak director of baseball media relations and new media. Comak was a reporter for The Washington Times.

Amber Cox stepped down as Phoenix Mercury president and chief operating officer.

The NCAA named JoAn Scott managing director for the Division I men’s basketball championship, effective after the 2014 Final Four.

The University of Wisconsin-Green Bay named Mary Ellen Gillespie athletic director, effective Dec. 2. Gillespie was associate athletic director for external relations at Bowling Green State University.

Western Illinois University hired Michael Jones as assistant athletic director of development. Jones was development director for the Centennial Honors College; the School of Distance Learning, International Studies and Outreach; and University Libraries.


Darlington Raceway named Chip Wile president. Wile was director of business development for the Motor Racing Network.

SMG named John Bolton, Gregg Olson and Larry Wilson regional vice presidents in its stadium and arena division.

SAE Advisory Group hired Peter Ruppe and Steve Frey.

The San Francisco 49ers promoted Ethan Casson to chief sales officer.


The LPGA promoted Tina Barnes-Budd to senior director of social media marketing and communications and Kelly Thesier to director of media communications.

The Tampa Bay Lightning promoted Erin Allison to marketing manager, Amy Bigelow to partnership activation manager, Brian Breseman to director of public relations, Kelsey Carlson to director of marketing, Tim Ennis to accounting manager, Heidi Hamlin to Lightning Foundation manager, Bree Maddocks to senior partnership activation manager, Nicole Parente to human resources manager, Jennifer Renspie to event marketing manager and Kelli Yeloushan to entertainment manager. The Lightning named Patrick Abts database marketing coordinator, Jenna DeBruler creative services coordinator, Michelle Gingras hockey reporter, Alayn Hornick event coordinator, Charlea Jackson human resources generalist, Caity Kauffman social media marketing manager, Kyla Laga account representative, Angela Parone senior event marketing coordinator, Scott Peterson staff accountant, Jason Pippi director of production operations, Matthew Samost business analyst, Caitlyn Schultz human resources assistant, Kimberly Seeley event manager, Scott Wilson event operations coordinator and Missy Zielinski beat writer.

Papa John’s named Bob Kraut senior vice president and chief marketing officer. Kraut was senior vice president of brand marketing and advertising for Arby’s.

Alison Lewis stepped down as Coca-Cola senior vice president of North America strategic marketing.

The Chicago Tribune named Rich Campbell beat reporter covering the Chicago Bears. Campbell was a reporter for The Washington Times.

The IOC named Jochen Färber head of IOC President Thomas Bach’s executive office. Färber was the managing director of Germany’s Olympic Training Center for Fencing.

Sporting Goods and Apparel
Nathan named Ben Lanza product developer.


Championship Bull Riding named Steve Rempelos chief marketing officer. Rempelos was executive vice president of Grit Rock Rodeo.

Steve Johnson resigned as executive director of the Bowling Proprietors’ Association of America.

Experient named Steve Schell sports strategic sales executive. Schell was vice president of sales for the San Diego Sports Commission.


Huddle hired John Dvoroznak as affiliate territory manager.

Hit the Grid Promotions named Earl Fannin vice president of operations.

Awards and Boards
The Baseball Writers’ Association of America named LaVelle Neal III president and Jose de Jesus Ortiz vice president.

USA Football named Dawn Aponte to its board of directors. Aponte is executive vice president for the Miami Dolphins.

The Women’s Sports Foundation named Melissa Stockwell the winner of the Wilma Rudolph Courage Award. Stockwell is a member of the U.S. paratriathlon team.

Hillerich & Bradsby Co. named David Heath, Kirk Perry and Doug Cobb to its board of directors.

The L.A. Sports Council named Karen Brodkin to its board of directors. Brodkin is executive vice president of business and legal affairs at Fox Sports Media Group.

Hibbett Sports named Jeff Rosenthal to its board of directors and Mickey Newsome non-executive chair.

The International Tennis Hall of Fame & Museum elected Katrina Adams, Vijay Amritraj, David Bell, Laurie Erlandson, David Ford, David Goulden, Charlie Pasarell, Barbara van Beuren and Stewart Wicht to its board of directors, and named Rosalind Walter, Peggy Woolard and John Reese life trustees.

Sport Chalet named Miki Berardelli to its board of directors.

The Columbia (Mo.) Public Schools Foundation named Andy Rawlings one of its outstanding alumni. Rawlings is executive vice president and chief operating officer for Learfield Sports.

Clemson University named Mark Richardson to its board of trustees. Richardson was formerly president of the Carolina Panthers.

The Green Bay Packers elected Thomas Olejniczak to their executive committee.

The Oregon Sports Authority named Chris McGowan, Jason Daughn, Sucheta Bal, Torre Chisholm, Larry Eldridge, Jim Richardson, Rodrigo Lopez and Jon George to its board of directors.

The U.S. Golf Association named Michael Cumberpatch the recipient of the 2014 Joe Dey Award.

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.

Fun foursome at Pro Am Jam

At the Denny & Mark Pro Am Jam at the Daniel Island Club in Charleston, S.C., on Oct. 22: NASCAR driver Denny Hamlin, Hootie and the Blowfish guitarist Mark Bryan, actor Bill Murray and NASCAR owner Joe Gibbs. The event raised more than $150,000 for the Denny Hamlin Foundation.

Belk and SEC mark commitment to bowl

Belk Chairman and CEO Tim Belk, with SEC Commissioner Mike Slive, Charlotte Sports Foundation Executive Director Will Webb and Belk EVP Jon Pollack, announced a six-year deal for his retail chain to continue title sponsorship of the Belk Bowl. Slive was at Belk headquarters in Charlotte on Nov. 4 to formalize an agreement giving the conference a spot in the game.

Russell on hand for statue unveiling

Unveiling a statue of Celtics hall of famer Bill Russell at Boston City Hall Plaza on Nov. 1: The Sager Family Foundation’s Bobby Sager, Celtics hall of famer Tommy Heinsohn, Boston Mayor Thomas Menino, Russell, artist Ann Hirsch, and Celtics co-owners Stephen Pagliuca and Wyc Grousbeck.

Better stick to hoops, Mr. President

Chicago Blackhawks owner and chairman Rocky Wirtz laughs as President Barack Obama pretends to swing a hockey stick during a celebration of the 2013 NHL champions in the East Room of the White House on Nov. 4.

NYRR salutes ING

New York Road Runners presented ING with a Tiffany & Co. tray to commemorate 11 years of ING’s title sponsorship of the New York City Marathon at a sponsor reception Nov. 1 at Robert in New York City: Phil Margolis, Dana Ripley and Suzanne Sullivan of ING; NYRR’s Mary Wittenberg; Ann Glover of ING; and Michelle Doti Taylor and Peter Ciaccia of NYRR.

Kain fills exec-in-residence spot at UMass

Bob Kain, senior adviser for CAA Sports and former president and co-CEO of IMG, served as the Mark H. McCormack Executive-in-Residence at the Isenberg School of Management, UMass Amherst Oct. 29-31. With Kain (center) are department faculty Mark McDonald, Janet Fink, Neil Longley, Glenn Wong, Steve McKelvey, department Chair Lisa Masteralexis and Todd Crosset.

A Warriors welcome

Golden State Warriors owner Joe Lacob gives the keynote speech at the Warriors’ partner summit on Nov. 4 at Oracle Arena.

Magic men

The Orlando Magic held a news conference Nov. 1 at Amway Center marking the team’s 25th anniversary. Magic SVP Pat Williams; Nick Anderson, the team’s first draft pick; and Magic CEO Alex Martins were among those on hand.

Tanks very much

Under Armour founder and CEO Kevin Plank poses with Olympic champion Michael Phelps and former Baltimore Ravens linebacker Ray Lewis in front of industrial tanks that feature the likenesses of Lewis, Phelps and Baltimore Orioles hall of famer Cal Ripken Jr. next to Under Armour’s Baltimore campus near the Inner Harbor.
Photo by: MATT RYB

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.

It’s opening night for both the Philadelphia 76ers and new CEO Scott O’Neil, who joined the team in July after four years with Madison Square Garden, where he was president of MSG Sports. As a warm-up to opening night, 76ers stalwart Allen Iverson is announcing his retirement courtside at 2 p.m. Following that for O’Neil are meetings, and dozens of handshakes, as he greets Philadelphia’s business and basketball glitterati who are on hand for the team’s 2013-14 debut.

Text and photos by Terry Lefton

Few sports attorneys are as busy these days as Adam Klein, who heads the sports practice for Chicago-based law firm Katten Muchin Rosenman. Among the recent high-profile deals in which he’s been involved are the $450 million sale of the Golden State Warriors, the $534 million sale of the Sacramento Kings, and the Los Angeles Lakers’ $3 billion, 20-year television deal with Time Warner Cable. Klein has spent more than 15 years at the firm, helping to build up its formidable practice.

— By John Lombardo

You have to have a sense of reasonableness and compromise to a certain extent in figuring out what is really important to the client. [Sports leagues] are monarchies, not democracies.

On getting a team sale done: It is not rocket science. It is pretty straightforward. It takes certain knowledge, and there has to be give and take. That’s the essence of a transaction as opposed to litigation. You’ve got to get approval of that particular league, and knowing the rules and the people and coming up with thoughtful ways to address the issues is what is very helpful.

On soaring franchise values: The media rights of teams have continued to become increasingly valuable. Will there be a time when that changes? I don’t see it right now.

Why not?: Sports is true reality TV that people want to see live. The leagues are healthy, and interactive media is helping as well. We are still going to have a rising tide. In baseball, the [San Diego] Padres and [Texas] Rangers were large valuations. It sets the expectations among owners, and I’m not sure in the near future when that is going to change.

On billionaire buyers: We are starting to relegate [team] sales to the billionaires of the world. You are seeing Guggenheim and other funds become more interested in these assets. They see the value, but the leagues have also become more flexible in dealing with these types of buyers because the world is more limited in finding individuals who have that wealth.

On the next NBA television deal: You try and lock in as many years as you can at the highest number. You will see a healthy growth rate in the dollars, but I’m not sure on how many years. There are more suitors. More bidders helps in a competitive landscape, and the rights go up nicely.

C hange is so accelerated now [that] it’s become the norm. As a result, agility in marketing is more important than it ever has been.

The key to marketing now and driving profitable growth has become successful cross-functional collaboration — across your company and with outside partners and agencies. Our mobile app has 3 1/2 million downloads. That was developed through collaboration between marketing, IT, operations, and franchisees to make it a real success.

Costello speaks at last month’s Association of National Advertisers annual conference in Phoenix.
Like so many brands, we’re still learning the right role for digital and social media, especially when traditional marketing continues to work well for us.

One thing we know is that if we put a product picture up in our restaurants, we sell more. When we take that picture down, we sell less. … It’s easy to get caught up in doing everything new in marketing.

Differentiate or die. We think about our brands every hour of every day, but the reality is that our customers don’t. So if we can’t tell consumers in a sentence or two why they should chose our brand, we’re lost in the shuffle.

Everything that touches consumers affects your brand: products, in-store experience, or whatever. Are you reaching out to everyone to make sure all those touch points are working together?

We’ve all seen brands that spent millions on great TV campaigns, yet customers still hated them. It’s because they didn’t understand what all the touch points were and how they could fit and work together.

The question of advertising on mobile is an intriguing one. Mobile becomes a form of one-to-one marketing, which is really a conversation with your consumer. It requires understanding what your customer wants and providing them with information to fill that need.

In that context, relevant offers and information are powerful; spam is not.

The key to our growth as a brand has been convincing people that we are the place to get their “coffee-plus” meal every morning, and maybe stop by in the afternoon for more. “Time to make the donuts” was a great and iconic campaign from our past, but we realized that coffee was our future.

People like ritual, but they also like change, so a key part of our success has been understanding the value of product continuity and product innovation.

This is such a people-driven business that my No. 1 priority is assembling a great team, including our agency partners, and getting out of their way (laughs).

We had 43 product launches within the year, so I suppose you could say that we set high expectations and empower our people to deliver and achieve on those.

With that many new products, I go back to how important collaboration is. Our culinary team reports to me, and the way they work with the marketing team has everything to do with how fast and comprehensively new products get out the door. With that many new things, you can see we encourage innovation, but at the same time, we are not afraid to fail.

We discovered a couple of years ago that the power of the Dunkin’ brand lies in the passion of our fans for our coffee.

We found some of our biggest fans on social media, contacted those with the most interesting tweets and asked them if they wanted to be in an ad. The result is our new campaign, #mydunkin.

Given the increasing power of social media, you may see a lot more brands heading in this direction, because it just makes so much sense.

I am a huge consumer of every sort of media, including social media, because I believe an important part of my job is picking up on emerging trends.

My smartphone is my most indispensable device, followed quickly by my tablet, because I am increasingly getting all my media digitally. The first thing I look at in the mornings is still email, though, like everyone else.

The most important lesson I learned from my years at [Procter & Gamble] was just an overriding focus on the consumer and research. … If you understand the consumer better than anyone else, it means you will meet their needs better than anybody else.

The best career advice I ever got was at P&G, and it was “Focus on having a positive impact and building great relationships with your peers, and your career will take care of itself.”