Newsroom Archive

November 14, 2011

WISE Names Kathleen Francis New Board Chair

WISE Names Kathleen Francis New Board Chair
Contact: Rachel Gary (201) 615-9629 Rachel.GaryPR@gmail.com
WISE NAMES KATHLEEN FRANCIS NEW BOARD CHAIR Sports Industry Veteran to Take the Helm as only Second Board Chair in WISE History
NEW YORK, NY (November 14, 2011) — Women in Sports & Events (WISE), the leading voice and resource for professional women in the business of sports and events, announced today that sports industry veteran Kathleen Francis has been named the new Chair of the National Board of Directors, effective immediately. WISE Founder Sue Rodin led the organization for more than 18 years and will now assume the title Chair Emerita, and remain active with the organization.
Francis served as Managing Director, Marketing and Development at the United States Tennis Association in addition to holding senior positions at Major League Baseball and the Meadowlands Sports & Entertainment Complex. A New Orleans native, Francis founded and now leads Oasis Sports Ventures, a marketing and development company specializing in providing quality amateur sports programs and national competitions for youth, young adults and families. Francis has been recognized as a Sports Business Journal Top 40 Under 40 and Top 25 Female Sports Executives. She is also a past WISE National Board member and in 2001, was honored as a WISE Woman of the Year.
A national search was conducted by The Griffin Network, a leading industry search agency lead by sports veteran Cathy Griffin, over the course of many months.
“This is an exciting time for WISE and I am honored to follow in Sue Rodin’s footsteps as WISE’s new chair,” stated Francis. “I’ve seen first-hand the impact WISE can have and am excited about working with the board to grow WISE and expand its voice and reach in the coming years.”
Francis will be the second WISE chair following Sue Rodin, who has served as board chair since she founded the organization in 1993. What began as a gathering of women executives in the sports industry has grown to more than 1,000 members with ten chapters across the country. In addition to now serving as Chair Emerita of WISE, Rodin will continue as President of her consulting practice, Stars & Strategies.
“WISE was born out of my own experiences and conversations with countless women about the need for an organization to give them a voice,” stated Rodin. “I’ve dedicated the past 18 years of my professional life to establishing and building WISE. It’s been so rewarding to see the progress we’ve made and the impact we continue to have. I will always be an active WISE board member and the timing is perfect for me to focus more on Stars & Strategies and help Kathy write the next chapter for WISE.”
About WISE WISE (Women in Sports & Events) is the leading voice and resource for professional women in the sports and events industries. Through ongoing meetings, special events and mentoring programs, WISE aims to offer its members the opportunity to gain valuable industry insights and connections that can give them a competitive advantage in their current position and as they advance in their careers. Founded in 1993, WISE is a membership organization headquartered in New York City with chapters in Atlanta, the Bay Area, Boston, Chicago, Cleveland, Los Angeles, NYC-Metro, Pittsburgh and Washington, DC, as well as Syracuse University’s WISE on Campus. To become a member of WISE, please visit www.WISEworks.org.