A group of esteemed sports business executives have united to launch a first-of-its-kind, industry-wide, and mission-driven community called Pro Sports Assembly (“The Assembly”) – a 501(c)(3) organization for people who work in professional sports which aims by 2030 to achieve parity in opportunity, pay and leadership amongst its workforce.

Designed to keep leagues, teams and unions both knowledgeable and accountable for delivering an equitable and profitable future in professional sports organizations – The Assembly is a member-led community that challenges its industry to advance diverse and inclusive leadership. It believes that by developing cultural and gender intelligence, as well as setting best practices of stewardship, mentorship and allyship, professional sports properties can drive innovation, bolster financial performance, capture new markets and increase brand loyalty. The Assembly is aggressive in its vision and stance to create the future of its industry through the #PowerofProSports.

“We are united in game plan, and diverse in council,” says Shareef Abdur-Rahim, President of NBA G League and Founding Advisory Board Member of The Assembly. “We organized our Founding Boards to represent the diversity that our industry-at-large needs to see. In order to truly advance collectively – we must use an equity lens in leadership.”

“It is important for us to identify and develop the next generation of our industry’s top talent,” says Alex Chang, Chief Marketing Officer of San Francisco 49ers and Founding Governing Board Member of The Assembly. “This requires breaking down traditions, norms and biases that currently exist – and replacing them with new and refined processes that will help guide decisions impacting the future of professional sports and the career paths of its employees.”

“For every five athletes you see on the field of play, there are 95 people behind the scenes bringing that game to life,” says Laura Dixon, Head of External Relations for Spurs Sports & Entertainment, and Founding Governing Board Member of The Assembly. “The people who work for professional sports teams, leagues and unions now have a place to connect and collaborate on the critical issues facing our industry. The larger our membership, the more impactful we can be in our purpose of advancing diverse, productive and inclusive leadership. The power of pro sports is truly in its people.”

See below a complete list of The Assembly’s Founding Board Members (in alphabetical order):

Andy Loughnane – President, Austin FC
Cynt Marshall – CEO, Dallas Mavericks
Ese Ighedosa – President, House of Athlete
Hugh Weber – President, Harris Blitzer Sports & Entertainment
Jessica Berman – Deputy Commissioner, National Lacrosse League
Kenneth Shropshire – CEO, Global Sport Institute, Arizona State University
Kyle Bunch – Vice President/Managing Director, Global Sports Venture Studios
Len Perna – CEO, Turnkey Search
Michele Roberts – Executive Director, National Basketball Players Association
Shareef Abdur-Rahim – President, NBA G-League
Shelley Zalis – CEO, The Female Quotient
Theresa Tran – Founder, The Offense
Tom Glick – President, Tepper Sports & Entertainment
Xavier Gutierrez – CEO, Arizona Coyotes