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Volume 23 No. 23
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New Voices Under 30: Kirby Porter

Photo: Courtesy of Kirby Porter
Photo: Courtesy of Kirby Porter
Photo: Courtesy of Kirby Porter

Kirby Porter

Marketing Analyst, NBA and 
Hoops Partnerships, PepsiCo

Age: 23
Born: Houston
Education: Harvard University, concentrated in sociology

About you

Could not go a day without: Spotify. Anyone that knows me knows I’m always listening to music or a podcast. 

Go-to person when you need help: Both of my parents. It’s important to say both because they’re my go-to people for different avenues of my life. I go to my mom for navigating life in general. … I go to my dad for life decisions as well, but he was the point for my athletic career from third grade AAU days to playing college basketball.   

In 10 years I hope to be … : Empowering athletes through the output of work, continuing to market and build global brands, and inspiring women of color through my journey.

I think that my generation has actually mastered the art of leveraging social media as a tool, consuming with intention, and identifying innovative ways to extend our platforms.

In the industry

Biggest surprise at career’s start: There’s mentorship at all levels. I think recent graduates are often under the perception that when they begin, the only way to seek career advice is to build relationships upward. … I quickly learned how important the support system across [all levels] would be as well.  

Most exciting aspect of sports business: Empowering athletes. From the game to my career, I’ve always loved the idea of empowering others through sport, whether that was as a leader on the court, or now as a marketer leveraging brands and storytelling to achieve that same goal.  

Sports industry needs to do a better job of … : Supporting women’s sports. Growing up a women’s basketball player, I’ve always strongly believed that being a female athlete comes with a different level of dedication. You play for the love of the game, because the flash doesn’t always come with it. … While there is more visibility and belief across media and brands, the next step is to act in their support of women’s leagues and athletes.