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ILR event to feature alums in sports industry leadership

Gary Bettman

The commissioner of the National Hockey League, the president of ESPN, the co-head of CAA Sports and other Cornell alumni will lead discussions about the future of the sports industry at the Cornell ILR Sports Leadership Summit on Nov. 15 at the Grand Hyatt in New York City.

“Many ILR School and Cornell alumni are industry influencers who have a wide-ranging impact on sports. Their leadership sets the pace for an industry that is at the heart of the American cultural experience,” said Alexander Colvin, interim dean of the School of Industrial and Labor Relations, where he is the Martin F. Scheinman Professor of Conflict Resolution.

Whether it be deal-making, scouting prospective players, hiring talent, building teams or sharing sports news with the world, Cornell has a significant representation in the leadership of the sports industry, which generates over $70 billion in annual revenue.

The ILR School event is rooted in the school’s teaching heritage. Labor negotiations, labor economics, conflict resolution, leadership, statistics and other skills prepare students for a range of careers, including sports industry leadership.

Since its founding in 1945, ILR has helped shape the future of the sports industry. Cornellians who help lead the sports community will share their thought leadership at the day-long event.

Highlights will include a fireside chat with James Pitaro ’91, ESPN president and co-chairman of Disney Media Networks, and Sarah Spain ’02, an ESPN reporter, radio host and espnW columnist. They will discuss disruptive trends in sports media and share perspectives on the industry’s future. 

National Hockey League Commissioner Gary Bettman ’74 and CAA Sports co-head Michael Levine ’93 will discuss “Innovation, Leadership and Deal-Making in Sports.” It will be moderated by preeminent ESPN journalist Jeremy Schaap ’91.

Mary Catt is assistant director of communications for the ILR School.

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Gillian Smith