This week in the sports media and marketing ecosystem, Kevin Warren becomes the first African American Commissioner of a Power Five Conference, Dayoung Yun joins R/GA London as Creative Director, and Justin Osofsky gets tapped as Instagram’s new Chief Operating Officer.
For job openings and more on who’s moving where, check out the Hashtag Sports Weekly roundup.
Instagram Finds New Number Two
Justin Osofsky has been announced as Instagram’s new Chief Operating Officer, a position that has been vacant since last fall after several departures. Osofsky will essentially serve as second in command to Adam Mosseri. He brings with him years of experience as a senior executive at Facebook Inc. and a member of the company’s management team. There, he oversaw mergers and acquisitions, ran media partnerships, and managed content reviews among other things.
Peloton Hires Pair of Execs to Run Content Department
Jennifer Cotter and Kevin Chorlins are joining the content division of fitness-tech company Peloton. Cotter, a former executive at HSN and Oxygen Network, will fill the role of Chief Content Officer. Cotter’s experience overseeing a team of 500 will serve her well as she prepares to lead a content team responsible for producing up to 48 fitness classes a day. Kevin Chorlins will assist Cotter as Senior VP of Content most recently overseeing all content, marketing, and communications strategies at Scripps Network. His work at Scripps included brands such as Food Network, HGTV, Travel Channel, DIY Network and Cooking Channel.
Lenny Daniels Bolsters His Executive Team
Tina Shah has earned the third promotion given out by Turner Sports’ President Lenny Daniels since the recent departures of executives like Matt Hong and Jeff Zucker. Shah will fill the role of Executive Vice President/General Manager. This promotion comes as Shah nears her 18th year with Turner Broadcasting. In those 18 years, she has been the Assistant General Counsel and Senior Vice President.
XFL Announces New Hires
The XFL has filled five new roles at the XFL HQ, XFL Los Angeles, XFL Seattle, and XFL New York. Paul White is joining the XFL HQ as Director of CPG, Licensing & Partnerships; Heather Brooks Karatz has assumed the position as President of the Los Angeles XFL team where she made her first team hire of Steven Graciano as the Head of Marketing for the LA team; Anthony Zucconi will be joining the New York XFL team as Head of Marketing; and with the Seattle XFL team, Chris Savio is coming on as Senior Director of Corporate Partnerships, with Jim Christman joining the team as Team Director of Communications and Media Relations.
AMBSE Names New Chief Operating Officer
Dietmar Exler has been tapped as the new Senior Vice President and Chief Operating Officer for Arthur M. Blank Sports Entertainment. He will be in charge of all operations at Atlanta Falcons’ Owner Arthur Blank’s Mercedes-Benz Stadium. He joins the company after most recently serving as President and CEO of Mercedes-Benz USA where he oversaw all sales and marketing for passenger cars to the United States, Canada, and Mexico. Having managed as many as three-thousand employees in his previous position, Exler is well-suited for running Mercedes-Benz Stadium.
R/GA London Announces Creative Director
Dayoung Yun joins R/GA London as creative director. Yun will be charged with curating and creating all of the creative work that R/GA distributes to its clients. Yun will be jumping from Pablo London, where she held the same title and quarterbacked many successful business pitches such as The Laughing Cow and Holland & Barrett. An experienced creative, Dayoung Yun looks to deliver world-class cont for R/GA and its clients.
The Athletic Loads Up On MMA Coverage
As The Athletic begins its fight to carve out a piece of the MMA journalism landscape for itself, the publication does so with a loaded initial roster of writers. The Athletic trots out a ’27 Yankees-level lineup of MMA writers that includes Dann Stupp, Chuck Mindenhall, Shaheen Al, Josh Gross, Fernanda Prates, Ben Fowlkes, and Chad Dundas. Combined, The Athletic’s freshman class of MMA writers have years of experience covering the sport for established outlets such as ESPN, USA Today, Sports Illustrated, and MMA Junkie. Several writers also host their own MMA podcasts. The Gross Point Blank podcast will be absorbed by The Athletic while Fowlkes and Dundas’ popular Co-Main Event Podcast will remain independent.
The Big Ten Hires New Commissioner
Kevin Warren will take the reins as the Big Ten Conference’s new commissioner. The now-former Chief Operating Officer of the Minnesota Vikings and highest-ranking team executive is charged with keeping the Big Ten competitive with the rest of the Power Five conferences. Twenty years of NFL experience with the Lions, Rams, and Vikings were enough to make Warren the first African-American Commissioner of a Power Five conference. As a lawyer, he was instrumental in the Wilf family’s 2005 purchase of the Vikings, earning him a job with the franchise he has spent the last 14 years at.
Comscore Loses Another Executive
Kathryn Bachmann has stepped down from her position as Chief Operating Office at Comscore. Lasting just one month, Bachmann is not the only Comscore executive to resign recently. The analytics firm watched its VP’s of Strategy, Operations, and Corporate Strategy quit in the last month. This string of resignations began with former CEO Bryan Wiener and former President Sarah Hofstetter. Comscore looks to fill its corporate positions and bring some stability back to the firm.
ESPN Names Successor to Chip Dean
After Chip Dean transitioned into a new role in January, ESPN would hunt for a new director of Monday Night Football, a long-time staple of the network. Jimmy Platt has been tapped for the position. In his nine years at ESPN, Platt has directed many of the network’s biggest events. Platt has been in charge of ESPN and ABC college football games, NCAA Lacrosse National Championships, College Football Awards telecasts, NCAA Women’s Final Fours, and much more. With a treasure trove of experience at the company, Platt is poised to help Monday Night Football maintain its historic popularity.
Mets Select Executive Creative Director
Frank Anselmo joins the New York Mets as their new Executive Creative Director after a decade as a freelancer. This move brings Anselmo some stability, giving him a home base as he transitions to a role with the organization he has grown up with. Working from Citi Field will allow Anselmo ample opportunity to work with the team and deliver engaging content to baseball fans.
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