WORLD LACROSSE MANAGEMENT
Appointed: June 2017
Residing: Colorado Springs, Colorado, United States
World Lacrosse Chief Executive Officer will be focused on a number of strategic initiatives, including the development and expansion of the organization’s communications, world championship and commercial platforms.
Jim Scherr became the first Chief Executive Officer of the Federation of International Lacrosse in June of 2017. The FIL named Jim Scherr its Executive Director following a search for an experienced sports executive with leadership qualities, vision, respect, and credibility to expand the Fil’s brand and reach. Scherr, whose extensive background in Sport spans from an athlete to an executive at the highest level brings over 30 years of Olympic and Paralympic experience to the International Federation. Scherr is distinguished as the first and only Olympian to serve as the CEO of the U.S. Olympic Committee.
Prior to joining the FIL, Scherr most recently served as the Executive Director of the National Wheelchair Basketball Association. During his short tenure with the NWBA, he has brought Nike, T-Mobile and Molten on board as corporate partners, along with several other event sponsors of the 2016 National Wheelchair Basketball Tournament, the organization’s largest to date. One of his significant visions for the NWBA and its members was the development of membership programs while improving the athlete experience for all levels.
Before his tenure at the NWBA, he was the Chief Operating Officer of the inaugural European Games in Baku, Azerbaijan, which is a major multi-sport event that features European countries competing in 20-plus sports every four years, similar to the Pan American Games.
He served as the first National Collegiate Hockey Conference Commissioner from 2012-13. He was responsible for the brand development of the new Collegiate Hockey Conference, successfully selling its first broadcast rights to CBS Sports that included 15 regular season games and the semi-finals and finals of the Conference Championship Tournament. Scherr brought the Conference Championships to the Target Center in Minneapolis, Minnesota, where it remains today.
From 2003-09, Scherr was the Chief Executive Officer of the U.S. Olympic Committee, the first former Olympian to serve in that position. While overseeing 45 Olympic sports, Scherr directed the day-to-day operations at a time when the USOC enjoyed unparalleled success. At the Beijing 2008 Summer Olympics, the United States collected 110 medals, then the most ever for an American Olympic team in non-boycotted Games. The United States also won an all-time high 25 medals – this is for an Olympics on foreign soil at the Torino, Italy Winter Games in 2006.
During this time, Scherr fostered valuable relationships with U.S. amateur athletic associations, business leaders, and national and international sports leaders. While serving as CEO, the USOC delivered its strongest financial performance in history, and America’s athletes enjoyed unparalleled success on the field of play – a track record that earned Scherr widespread respect and admiration. As CEO, he worked with the congressional task force and volunteer leadership to direct a historic governance reform process, reducing the size of the Board from 125 to 11. Under Scherr’s guidance, the USOC adopted a new vision statement and developed a new operating plan for the USOC titled, ‘Athlete’s first’. This plan returned the emphasis of the USOC to the athlete and in the process regained the confidence of the constituent groups, the press, congress, and the public. In conjunction with the International Olympic Committee, Scherr helped negotiate the sale of the media rights in the U.S. market to NBC for a record $2.01 billion along with a sponsorship to GE for $200 million in 2003.
While he was the USOC CEO, Team USA won 236 total medals: 110 in Beijing, 101 in Athens and 25 in Turin, leading the medal count in Athens and Beijing and finishing among the leaders in Torino.
Scherr joined the USOC staff as Chief of Sport Performance in November 2000. As head of sport performance, he was responsible for directing many USOC programs and services to support the development of amateur athletics in the United States. During this time, the USOC won 34 medals in the 2002 Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City, the most ever for the United States. The previous high was 13.
Prior to joining the USOC, Scherr served as the Executive Director of USA Wrestling from 1990 to 2000, an era that saw record growth of the sport and unprecedented success on the mat in World and Olympic competition. Scherr was the first executive director of USA Wrestling who was still an active athlete. He was the youngest Executive Director in the Olympic movement at the time.
Scherr’s first Olympic experience came as a competitor in the Seoul 1988 Summer Games. Both he and his twin brother, Bill, earned a spot on the 1988 U.S. Wrestling Team. Scherr finished fifth in the freestyle light-heavyweight class (198 pounds/90 kg) while his brother took the bronze in the heavyweight division (220 pounds/100 kg). Scherr was a silver medalist at the world championships in 1987 and 1989, World Cup champion in 1986 and 1989 and second in 1990. He was also the Pan Am champion in 1989 and the U.S. Nationals champion in 1986, 1987 and 1989. He was named the outstanding wrestler at the 1989 U.S. Nationals.
Scherr was a two-time All-American and national champion wrestler at the University of Nebraska from 1981-84. Both Jim and Bill were four-year lettermen for the Cornhuskers and both won NCAA Titles in 1984. Jim won the 177-pound Big Eight and NCAA title while Bill won the 190-pound NCAA championship.
Scherr earned a bachelor’s degree in business administration from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and a master’s degree in business administration from the acclaimed Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University.
A native of Mobridge, S.D., Scherr has also served on the founding task force for U.S. Paralympics and served as Chairman of the Board of Directors of the US Paralympics. He is a founding member of Partnership for Clean Competition with colleagues from Major League Baseball, National Football League, and the National Basketball Association and served as its first Board Chairman. He is also a past volunteer Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Colorado Springs Sports Corporation. Scherr is a distinguished member of the National Wrestling Hall of Fame, Order of Merit award winner National Wrestling Hall of Fame and is a member of the Colorado Springs Sports Hall of Fame for accomplishments in sports management and administration.
Scherr is married to the former Haley Thompson and has five children – sons Evan, Brycen, and Liam, and daughters Kylie and Grace.
BOARD OF DIRECTORS
Term: August 2017 – July 2019 – Two-Year Term
Residing: Twickenham, England
The president confirms the agenda and timing of all Board Meetings and General Assemblies, and presides over these meetings. The President also serves as an ex-officio member of all committees and is responsible for the development and implementation of World Lacrosse Strategic and Operational Plans.
England’s Sue Redfern brings a lifetime of dedication to the sport of lacrosse in her new role as FIL board president. Sue’s lacrosse career began in 1969 as goalkeeper for the Birmingham Ladies Lacrosse Club and spanned seventeen years with Birmingham and the Worcester Ladies Lacrosse Club. Her administrative and organizational work for more than four decades includes team, tournament and league management at all levels of the sport, from local to international. For 20 years she assisted in organizing the six-day National Schools Tournament, and, in 2001, was named director of the International Federation of Women’s Lacrosse Associations (IFWLA) Women’s World Cup held in High Wycombe, England.
Sue has held numerous national and international lacrosse leadership positions including chair of the All England Women’s Lacrosse Association (AEWLA) and board chair of the English Lacrosse Association (ELA). From 2001-2008 she served as vice-president(Administration) of the IFWLA, participating in its transition to the FIL. Since 2011 she has been an official representative from England to the FIL.
In 2009, Sue was honored with both the FIL Lifetime Achiever Award and the FIL Development Award. In 2008 Prince William presented her with the Torch Trophy Trust Award for her services to lacrosse. Other honors include the IFWLA Honorary Life Member Award, the ELA Development Award, the ELA Award for Services to International Lacrosse and the AEWLA Honorary Life Member award.
Sue’s commitment to lacrosse has been matched only by her distinguished career in academia. She retired in 2012 as Director of Information Services and University Librarian at the University of Surrey, Roehampton, where she managed a staff of up to 150 and oversaw a wide array of university media and information services. While there, and previously at other institutions, Sue published numerous professional articles, presented at many conferences, advocating for innovative and effective ways to enhance teaching and learning, and was a member of several national and international organizations and committees dedicated to information services and academics.
A resident of Twickenham, England, Sue holds a BA with Honors and an MBA from Open University as well as a diploma in Librarianship from Birmingham Polytechnic.
“I am honored to have been elected president of the FIL at a critical and exciting time for lacrosse,” Sue said. While implementing important changes, FIL needs “to ensure the continuity of the development program, both in new countries and in helping existing member countries grow even stronger.” She added, “We also need to forge changing relationships with regional organizations, such as the Asia Pacific Lacrosse Union (APLU) and the European Lacrosse Federation (ELF), and to encourage new regional organizations to be developed. I look forward to working with other board members to achieve our ambitious aims.”
Term: 2018–2022 – Four-Year Term
Residing: Baltimore, Maryland, United States
The vice president performs the duties of the president in the absence of the president or in the event the president is unable to serve. The vice president also serves as an ex-officio member of all committees of the Board and chairs the Nominations Committee.
In 1984, Stenersen became the executive director of the Lacrosse Foundation. He led the transformation of the organization, which dated to 1959, by increasing membership by 700 percent to over 17,000 members. He also led the creation of a national network of chapters to unify development efforts in areas throughout the country, and supervised fundraising and construction of the first national headquarters for the sport in 1991, as well as a subsequent facility expansion in 1997. In the mid-90s, he played a leading role in the merger of eight national lacrosse organizations to form the sport’s first national governing body. The result of those efforts was the creation of US Lacrosse, which began operations on Jan. 1, 1998. The organization has since invested more than $150 million into the sport’s national development. US Lacrosse has more than 430,000 members in 68 regional chapters throughout 45 states.
As the chief staff executive for US Lacrosse, Stenersen reports to the organization’s 25-member national Board of Directors, which sets organizational policy and strategic direction. He also serves as the chief staff liaison to the US Lacrosse Foundation, an independent nonprofit organization governed by a 27-member Board of Directors, the mission of which is to provide additional financial resources to support US Lacrosse operations.
US Lacrosse provides national structure and leadership for the sport and offers comprehensive resources focused on sustaining positive growth. The organization has a staff of 83 at its national headquarters in Baltimore and engages hundreds of leadership volunteers throughout the country at board, committee and subcommittee levels. Stenersen is now leading efforts to fund and construct a 45,000-square-foot National Lacrosse Center, which will serve as the organization’s new headquarters and the national training center for US Teams. The facility will also incorporate the Lacrosse Museum and National Hall of Fame.
Stenersen has traveling extensively throughout the United States and visited more than 20 nations on five continents to support lacrosse development efforts. From 1993 to 2003, he chaired the International Lacrosse Development Committee, a joint committee of the International Lacrosse Federation (ILF) and the International Federation of Women’s Lacrosse Associations (IFWLA). In that role, he led initiatives focused on expanding the sport throughout the world. Stenersen also served on an eight-person committee that led the unification of these two international federations, which culminated in the formation of the Federation of International Lacrosse (FIL) in 2008. The FIL has 50 member nations on six continents, and is coordinating and supporting lacrosse development efforts in a number of nations. Stenersen serves as the United States’ delegate to the FIL and was elected as the FIL’s Vice President in 2014.
A Baltimore native, Stenersen played college lacrosse at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where he was a member of two national championship teams, including his senior season when he was a team captain. Stenersen continued his playing career after college with the Mt. Washington Club. Stenersen has a B.A. in Journalism from the University in North Carolina and also attended the University of Baltimore for graduate study in Publication Design.
Stenersen has received recognition for his contributions to the sport on a number of occasions, including the Mt. Washington Cup (1986), the Krongard Trophy (1990), the Vail Lacrosse Shootout 25th Anniversary Award (1997), the Bernie Ulman Award (1998), the International Lacrosse Development Award (2005) and the Fellowship of Christian Athlete’s Peter Kohn Award (2014). In 2008, he was recognized by Sports Events magazine as one of the top 25 innovators and influencers in the sports industry. Stenersen has been inducted into St. Paul’s Athletic Hall of Fame (2008), the Greater Baltimore Chapter of US Lacrosse Hall of Fame (2009), and the North Carolina Chapter of US Lacrosse Hall of Fame (2014). He received the St. Paul’s School Outstanding Alumnus Award (2010) and a Smart CEO Magazine Future 50 Award (2014).
Steve was the past president (2013 – 2014) of the Board of The Baltimore Station, a residential addiction recovery program that serves veterans transitioning from the cycle of poverty, substance abuse and homelessness to self-sufficiency. He is a member of the National Sports Concussion Coalition (NSCA) Board, the Positive Coaching Alliance (PCA) National Advisory Board, the Association of Chief Executives of Sport (ACES) Board, and the Tewaaraton Foundation Board. He has represented US Lacrosse on numerous task forces and working groups across sport, including the United States Olympic Committee Working Group for Safe Training Environments (2010). Steve is also a member of St. Paul’s School Board of Trustees and a graduate of the Greater Baltimore Committee Leadership Program (2012).
Steve and his wife, Garvey, have two children, Audrey and Cole. The family resides in Butler, MD.
Term: August 2017 – July 2019 – Two-Year Term
Residing: Essex, England
The secretary general chairs the Finance Committee, oversees the financial functions of the organization, ensures adherence to relevant governance requirements and serves as a liaison with international sporting bodies.
He organised the competitive league structure in the South of England over the period 1969 -2004. He served on the English Lacrosse Association board since its inception in 1997 until 2016. Prior to that he was on the board of the Men’s organisation in England (English Lacrosse Union) and was a prime mover of the amalgamation of the Men’s and Women’s organisation into a single National Governing Body.
During his time as a senior officer of firstly the English Lacrosse Union and then the English Lacrosse Association he served on a team of volunteers and professional staff which has overseen significant increases in lacrosse participation in England particularly in the university and college area.
Over his career English Lacrosse has successfully hosted the 1978,1994 and 2010 Men’s World Championships , the 2001 Women’s World Cup and the 1999 Men’s and women’s European Championships.
In the pre-FIL days he was the Secretary / Treasurer on the International Lacrosse Federation (ILF) over the periods 1975-78 and 1990-94. In those days the role rotated around the ILF members depending on who was hosting the next Championship. Following a change in the structure of the ILF he took on the Competition role.
In 2006 he was asked to join the International Federation of Women’s Lacrosse Associations (IFWLA) / ILF Unification Board which later became the Transition Board leading to the formation of the Federation of International Lacrosse (FIL). In 2008 he was elected as the FIL Board member responsible for Finance and has also continued with the Men’s Competition role.
In his professional life he spent 40 years in the telecommunications corporate sector with the last role, prior to retirement, being a responsibility for the planning of and financial investment in the UK telecommunications network.
During the latter part of his career he was part of Government and NATO committees to assist in the planning of civil communications networks.
In 1998 he was “loaned” to the International Telecommunications Union (ITU – the telecommunications part of the United Nations, based in Geneva) to lead the Y2K telecommunications task force which necessitated considerable world- wide travel.
On a personal note Ron is married, his wife is a trained teacher and has recently retired from a second career as Wardrobe Mistress to the Royal Ballet School in London. He has two daughters, the eldest a Dance teacher and the younger one currently living in Australia is in marketing in the cosmetics industry.
Term: August 2018 – July 2022 (Four Year Term)
Residing: Perth, Australia
Having served on the IFWLA as an Officer for 16 years Fiona now joins the FIL Board of Directors following her election at the 2018 FIL General Assembly in Netanya, Israel. With competition being at the heart of any sport Fiona recognizes this is a pivotal time for the FIL, particularly in the competition arena with its ambitious program of change ~ “Competition is at the heart of any sport as we seek to develop, grow and promote the game at all levels and in all member nations.” Lacrosse has a compelling story to tell, and Fiona is pleased to be part of the FIL Team to help tell it with energy and vision, hoping for a shot at Olympic glory.
Fiona’s lacrosse career started with playing schoolgirl lacrosse in England, before moving with her family to Western Australia where she represented the State for 10 years, and played club lacrosse until 2016 when she finally hung her boots and retired her much-loved goalie stick!
Away from the playing field her inherent interest in the sport saw Fiona undertake administrative roles from club to international with continual service since 1985. During her term as WA President Fiona established herself on the international stage when she undertook the role of Executive Director of the 1989 IFWLA World Cup. The success of this event saw her elected as the IFWLA Vice President Tours & Tournaments the following year, serving two four-year terms before stepping down to again take on the ED role of another world event, the 1999 IFWLA U19 Championship in Perth, thus making her the first person to lead two World Events. After 11 years as Women’s Lacrosse Australia President Fiona stepped aside in 2001, prior to her election as IFWLA President, where she again served two terms. During this time Fiona was one of the catalysts in organizing a women’s international workshop, the outcomes of which facilitated the delivery of a restructure which would lead to the men’s and women’s associations merging into a single governing structure (FIL) that today represents a modern and diverse lacrosse community.
Following the merger of the Men’s and Women’s Australian NGB’s the Australian Lacrosse Association was formed in 2008, and Fiona took on the Presidency role of this unified body in 2009 prior to undertaking her current role as Executive Director of the Asia Pacific Lacrosse Union.
Fiona’s outstanding contribution over a long and distinguished career has been recognized with the awarding of the Australian Sports Medal (2000), the WA May Campbell Service to Sport Award (2001), Honorary Life Membership to Lacrosse West (1991), Women’s Lacrosse Australia (1996) and the IFWLA (2009), the FIL Development Award (2008) and the FIL Global Leader award (2009).
Fiona is a double certificate Registered Nurse in General and Midwifery and specializes in Emergency Nursing. To meet the competing demands of work and lacrosse Fiona enjoys being on the tennis court and is an avid League tennis player. She loves to travel, is one of the rare people who embrace the long-haul flights, and always enjoys taking time to reach out to many friends around the world.
She is a passionate, innovative and dedicated lacrosse leader who looks forward to being part of a Board seeking to thrive and succeed. Fiona will work with her committees to develop a competition plan which will create engagement and excitement for the FIL’s key initiatives to grow the sport globally, as well as its key events which include the Olympic vision, the World Games, and its current field and indoor international championships.
Fiona says her greatest challenge will be having the ability to ‘see and define what doesn’t yet exist’ which will result in the delivery of a game that will hopefully spearhead Lacrosse into the Olympics. “Lacrosse is aiming to become a truly global sport that offers gripping action and excites emotion. It’s a sport that brings people together, it has its unique aspects, which are fundamental to the integrity of the game, its rules of engagement and its values. Success in this sport is based upon respect, resilience and determination, and I’m thrilled to be part of this global movement to drive the competition and profile of the sport forward.”
Term: August 2017 – July 2019 – Two-Year Term
Residing: West Yorkshire, England
The technical director is responsible for the development of rules for all lacrosse disciplines recognized by World Lacrosse, the development of officials, and the selection of officials for World Lacrosse world championship competitions. The technical director is also responsible for World Lacrosse Anti-Doping activities, including management of the World Lacrosse Anti-Doping Administrator.
FIL Technical Director Donald E. Blacklock, of West Yorkshire, England, brings years of lacrosse officiating experience to this newly created board role. A veteran international lacrosse field official, Don has served since 2008 as FIL’s chair of Men’s Officiating, a post responsible for overseeing the design, development and growth of the FIL’s international officiating program including the training of officials for all disciplines of men’s lacrosse and selection and management of officials and assessors for the last six Men’s World Championships. He led a committee that established and maintained qualification standards, training curricula and testing for World Championship officials. He also has provided expertise to help establish referee programs throughout the world in emerging lacrosse nations by teaching referee courses and consulting with national governing bodies on the design and implementation of officiating programs and accreditation systems.
In England, Don serves as a member of the English Lacrosse Association’s (ELA) Referees and Rules Committee, which is responsible for the country’s Men’s National Officiating Program. The committee sets the overall direction of officiating for all levels of men’s lacrosse in England including certification criteria and allocation of officials to county, national, European and international competitions. It also develops and delivers referee-training courses and manages the rule change process.
In 2013, Don received the Lester B. Person Award from the Canadian Lacrosse Association for outstanding contributions of sportsmanship and leadership to the game of lacrosse. In 2014, he received the FIL’s Development Award for contributions to the development of officiating in international lacrosse.
Don’s involvement in sports extends to other areas including Netball. He serves as Digital Innovation and Transformation Manager for the All England Netball Association (England Netball) and previously was the organization’s Officiating Manager responsible for supervising more than 8,000 thousand umpires, tutors, assessors and regional administrators. He also is Independent Director for Sports Officials UK Ltd. (SOUK), an organization that supports development of officials across all UK sports. Prior to that, he held various technical positions in the automotive industry.
Don majored in administrative studies from York University, holds a postgraduate diploma in information security from Georgian College and a certificate in project management from Edinburgh Business School.
“I’m very honored to be the first Technical Director for the FIL,” Don said. “Officiating is one of the important foundation pieces for the sport and it is crucial for the continuing development of the game that we develop not only great athletes, but referees and umpires who can help players to showcase their talents.”
Don added that a cohesive and professional officiating program provides important benefits. “As we move towards Olympic recognition, we have a great opportunity to work with the regions and member nations to help them recruit and develop officials to improve the quality of lacrosse at the local level, which will naturally feed through to the performance levels of the game.”
Term: 2018–2022 – Four-Year Term
Residing: Marlboro, New Jersey, United States
The development director is responsible for the management of the World Lacrosse membership program, as well as World Lacrosse’s international development program.
Bob DeMarco serves as FIL’s Director of Development, taking over from longtime development head, Tom Hayes. DeMarco has been a part of FIL lacrosse development for years.
DeMarco served as FIL Development Committee Chair from 2014 through his appointment to Director of Development. From 2011 to 2014 DeMarco served as an FIL Development representative, providing equipment grants and conducting development clinics in several developing countries.
DeMarco’s efforts with Belgium, Russia and China, helped those countries’ National Governing Bodies for lacrosse field competitive teams and participate in the 2014 Men’s World Lacrosse Championship in Denver, Colorado, as a part of the 38-nation event. In fact, a total of 16 countries became members of FIL during his tenure with FIL’s development department.
DeMarco, a longtime member of the Long Island Lacrosse Club, is a graduate of Hofstra University where he was a standout dual-sport athlete in both football and lacrosse. He has been inducted in 2004 into the New Jersey Football Coaches Hall of Fame in recognition of his 30-year coaching career at Old Bridge High School in Matawan, New Jersey where he won two state championships.
Bob has a long history of involvement with international lacrosse, serving as an administrative assistant with the United States Men’s Lacrosse team at the International Lacrosse Federation’s 1974 World Championship. DeMarco has enjoyed a long professional relationship with Tom Hayes at Rutgers University where the two coached together for over twenty years.
DeMarco retired from coaching in 2009. He and his wife Zoni reside in Marlboro, New Jersey. They have two children, a son, C.J., and a daughter, Lindsey.
Term: 4 years (September, 2018 – August 2022).
Residing: Wellesley, Massachusetts, United States
David Ryan, has spent the entirety of his professional career working in international finance.
After graduating from Yale, David spent 22 years at Goldman Sachs & Co. David served in various roles in NY for 13 years before spending his final 9 years in Asia, where he ultimately served as President of Goldman Sachs Asia (ex Japan), and sat on the firm’s Management Committee.
David currently sits on the board of Mapletree Investments, Chairs the board of Mapletree Oakwood Holdings, and serves as a non-executive Director of ADT Security Services. David is also a member of the Board of Directors for the Jackson Institute for Global Affairs at Yale University as well as a member of the Yale Development Council.
In addition to his board roles, Mr Ryan remains a Senior Director of Goldman Sachs & Co. and serves as a Corporate Advisor to Temasek Holdings.
David, a native of Manlius NY, played lacrosse collegiately at Yale University, where he was a member of two NCAA tournament teams, including the 1990 Final Four team. David earned All-American and Academic All-American honors while at Yale. David has remained close to the Yale Lacrosse program, having served on the Alumni board for the last 5 years.
Term: 4 years (September, 2018 – August 2022).
Peter Guber has been a force in the entertainment industry for over thirty years. After receiving his Bachelor of Arts, Master of Law and Juris Doctorate degrees and admission to the New York and California Bars, he was recruited by Columbia Pictures in 1968 while pursuing an MBA degree at New York University’s Graduate School of Business. Within three years, he became Studio Chief, and during his tenure at the creative helm, Columbia surged to record-breaking profits on the strength of such critically acclaimed box office hits as Shampoo, The Last Detail, Tommy, The Way We Were, Taxi Driver and Close Encounters of the Third Kind.
In 1975, Guber resigned from Columbia and co-founded Casablanca
Record and Filmworks with Neil Bogart. Their record operation included such superstars as KISS, Donna Summer, Captain and Tennille, The Village People and Parliament with George Clinton. It also included some of the most successful soundtracks of all time, including the Academy Award winning Midnight Express, Lionel Ritchie and Diana Ross’ Endless Love, and Flashdance, which sold more than 14 million albums. During this period, Guber produced numerous television shows including Teddy White’s Emmy nominated Selling of the Presidency, the series Ocean Quest for NBC, and Mysteries of the
Sea, a two hour special for ABC.
Guber launched his career as an independent film producer with The Deep, which then became one of Columbia’s top box office successes of all time. His next film, Midnight Express, earned seven Academy Award nominations for Columbia, including “Best Picture,” a Golden Globe for “Best Picture” and a place in film history, with the National Association of Theater Owners naming Guber “Producer of the Year.”
In 1979, Guber founded Polygram Entertainment where he was Chairman of the Board and CEO. He sold his interest in Polygram in 1983 and formed and served as Co-Owner of the Guber-Peters Entertainment Company (GPEC), which established a major presence in motion pictures, television and music.
Combining tremendous commercial success and critical acclaim, the films directly produced and executive produced by Guber have earned more than $3 billion in worldwide revenue and more than 50 Academy Award nominations, including four times for “Best Picture.” Rain Man, when released, was the highest- grossing Best Picture Academy Award winner ever, and Batman established new standards for success, becoming one of the highest-grossing films from all sources in movie history.
Guber’s other box office and critical hits include Michael Apted’s Gorillas in the Mist, Steven Spielberg’s The Color Purple, George Miller’s The Witches of Eastwick, Flashdance, Costa Garvas’ Missing, Tango & Cash and John Landis’ American Werewolf in London.
In 1988, GPEC became a public company with the acquisition of Barris Industries, and in 1989, it was acquired by Sony Pictures Entertainment (SPE) where Guber became Chairman of the Board and Chief Executive Officer. During Guber’s tenure at SPE, the company extended its leadership in production and distribution of prime time, half-hour comedy television series, including such hit shows as Married with Children, Designing Women, Seinfeld, Mad About You, and The Nanny; revitalized the two largest and most successful game shows in the world — Wheel of Fortune and Jeopardy — nearly doubling their revenue; and continued to own daytime television with the resurgence and continued success of such soap operas as The Young and the Restless and Days of Our Lives. A large array of international arrangements were also
undertaken at this time with the television operation utilizing its vast library to gain equity positions in the international marketplace.
Under Guber’s leadership, the company re-framed its entire Loews exhibition circuit, becoming the premiere North American theatrical exhibition enterprise; introduced Sony’s state-of-the-art SDDS sound system; and introduced the concept of IMAX theater and films integrated into multi-plex theaters in the building, design and execution of Sony’s 67th Street Theater and IMAX complexes in New York City, Chicago, and San Francisco. Guber acquired for Sony the Magic Johnson Theatres and began an ongoing twenty year business relationship with Magic Johnson.
During Guber’s tenure as Chairman of the Board and Chief Executive Officer, SPE’s Motion Picture Group achieved, over four years, an industry-best domestic box office market share, which averaged seventeen percent. During the same period, Sony Pictures led all competitors with a remarkable total of 120 Academy Award nominations, the highest four-year total ever for a single company.
SPE’s motion picture business was propelled by an enormous string of successes, which included Awakenings, Misery, Postcards from the Edge, Flatliners, Look Who’s Talking, Terminator 2, Boyz n the Hood, The Prince of Tides, Bugsy, City Slickers, The Fisher King, Basic Instinct, A League of Their Own, Mo’ Money, Single White Female, A River Runs Through It, Honeymoon in Vegas, A Few Good Men, Dracula, Sleepless in Seattle, In the Line of Fire, Groundhog Day, Cliffhanger, and Philadelphia.
While at the company, Guber assembled a strong management team, conceived and planned the development of SPE’s new world headquarters at the state-of-the-art Sony Pictures Studios, spearheaded SPE’s recapture of its own home video business, and innovated a corporate name change to strengthen the unique identities of the company’s individual businesses. In addition, Guber launched the prestigious Sony Pictures Classics, which in each of its first three years won the Academy Award for “Best Foreign Language Film.”
After leaving Sony as CEO in 1995, Guber formed Mandalay Entertainment Group as a multi-media joint venture with Sony in motion pictures and television. Mandalay Entertainment Group later added professional sports, sports entertainment and digital media as business enterprises.
Mandalay Pictures, a division of Mandalay Entertainment Group, produces motion pictures for the global marketplace. Mandalay’s primary distributor relationship is through its first look deal with Universal Pictures. The company’s rich history of creating filmed entertainment includes the box office hit, I Know What You Did Last Summer; the critically and commercially successful Donnie Brasco, starring Al Pacino and Johnny Depp and directed by Mike Newell; the international success Seven Years in Tibet starring Brad Pitt and directed by Jean-Jacques Annaud; the commercially successful Wild Things, starring Matt Dillon, Kevin Bacon, Neve Campbell and Bill Murray; and Les Miserables, starring Liam Neeson, Geoffrey Rush, Uma Thurman, and Claire Danes.
Other films include Galapagos, the documentary for the Smithsonian Institution in IMAX 3D, I Still Know, the sequel to I Know What You Did Last Summer; The Deep End of the Ocean, starring Michelle Pfeiffer and Whoopi Goldberg; Sleepy Hollow, directed by Tim Burton and starring Johnny Depp; Enemy At The Gates, directed by Jean-Jacques Annaud and starring Joseph Fiennes, Jude Law, Rachel Weisz and Ed Harris; The Score, starring Robert DeNiro, Edward Norton and Marlon Brando; Into the Blue, starring Jessica Alba and Paul Walker; The Jacket, starring Keira Knightley and Adrien Brody; Darfur Now, the documentary produced by Don Cheadle; and Never Back Down, starring Djimon Hounsou.
Mandalay recently wrapped production on the feature film When The Game Stands Tall, starring James Caviezel and directed by Thomas Carter, which is based on the true story of football coach Bob Ladouceur who lead his team to a twelve season winning streak. The film will be released by Sony in 2014. Mandalay is also in post-production on the film adaptation of Joe Hill’s best selling horror novel Horns, starring Daniel Radcliffe with Alexandre Aja directing. Following a successful sale at the Toronto International Film Festival, the picture will be released by Dimension/RADiUS-TWC in 2014. The company is currently preparing projects including Sinatra with director Martin Scorsese and Universal Pictures; an adaptation of Max Barry’s cutting edge novel Machine Man to be produced by Darren Aronofsky and Mandalay; the young adult franchise based on Firelight, Sophie Jordan’s best selling series about mystical Draki; The Birds, inspired by the Hitchcock classic; and Warriors, an animated franchise with Twentieth Century Fox, based on the publishing mega-hit by Erin Hunter.
Mandalay Vision launched as the company’s independent development, production and financing label that focuses on innovative storytelling with premier talent. Mandalay Visions’s first release, The Kids Are All Right, was one of 2010’s most successful independently produced and financed films. A Sundance Film Festival darling directed by Lisa Cholodenko and starring Julianne Moore, Annette Bening and Mark Ruffalo, the film won the Golden Globe for Best Motion Picture – Musical or Comedy, and was nominated for four Academy Awards, including Best Picture.
Mandalay Vision recently wrapped principal photography on The Voices, a psychological thriller starring Ryan Reynolds, Anna Kendrick and Gemma Arterton, directed by auteur director Marjane Satrapi, which was filmed in Berlin. The company is currently in preproduction on the thriller Dark Places, an adaptation of the Gillian Flynn mystery novel, starring Charlize Theron and directed by Gilles Paquet-Brenner.
In 2011, Mandalay Vision premiered two films at the Sundance Film Festival: Salvation Boulevard, directed by George Ratliff and starring an impressive ensemble cast featuring Pierce Brosnan, Jennifer Connelly, Greg Kinnear, Ed Harris and Marisa Tomei sold to IFC and Sony and was released in July of 2011; and Another Happy Day, the debut film from writer/director Sam Levinson, starring Ellen Barkin, Ellen Burstyn, Kate Bosworth, Ezra Miller and Demi Moore. The film won the Waldo Salt Screenwriting Award at the festival’s closing ceremony, and was distributed by Phase 4 in November of 2011. Mandalay Vision’s Soul Surfer was released by Tri-Star in April 2011 to box office success. The picture stars Dennis Quaid, Helen Hunt, Carrie Underwood and AnnaSophia Robb, and is the true story of competitive teen surfer Bethany Hamilton. Additional films include The Whistleblower, a drama directed by Larysa Kondracki and starring Rachel Weisz, Vanessa Redgrave and David Strathairn, which debuted at Toronto Film Festival, sold to Samuel Goldwyn and was released in August 2011; and, Vanishing on 7th Street, an apocalyptic thriller directed by Brad Anderson, starring Hayden Christensen, Thandie Newton and John Leguizamo and financed by Herrick Entertainment, which also premiered at the Toronto Film Festival and was released in February 2011 by Magnet. Bernie, directed by Richard Linklater and starring Jack Black, Matthew McConaughey and Shirley MacLaine, premiered as the opening night film of the Los Angeles Film Festival in June of 2011. Released by Millennium in April of 2012, Bernie debuted at #1 with the best per-theater average for a limited release. It was one of the year’s most successful independent films, and went on to earn a Golden Globe nomination for Jack Black (Best Actor, Comedy or Musical), two Spirit Award nominations, and a number of other prestigious accolades.
Mandalay Series Television has enjoyed great success with Cupid (ABC), Mercy Point (UPN), Rude Awakening (Showtime), Oh, Baby (Lifetime), and the critically acclaimed television series, Brotherhood (Showtime). Brotherhood, with Jason Clarke, Jason Isaacs, Annabeth Gish and Ethan Embry won The George Foster Peabody Award in 2006.
Mandalay Television Pictures produces high profile television movies-of-the-week and mini-series. Past successes include Dean Koontz’s number one best seller Intensity, a four hour mini series for FOX; top rated Get to the Heart (The Barbara Mandrell Story) for ABC; the four hour mini series Final Descent for CBS; and for ABC Medusa’s Child, Bad As I Wanna Be and Ali, King of the World. Other successes include Sole Survivor, based on Dean Koontz’s number one best selling book; First Daughter for Turner; and The Linda McCartney Story for CBS. Mandalay Television’s Blood Crime, starring James Caan & Jonathan Schaech, was USA network’s highest rated (Crime Friday) movie for 2002.
Based on the books of the world renowned and best-selling author, Nora Roberts, Mandalay Television has produced a franchise of original made-for-television movies for Lifetime Television, which has been a worldwide ratings success for the cable network. More than 34 million viewers tuned in to the first collection of four movies: Angels Fall, Blue Smoke, Carolina Moon and Montana Sky. Following the network’s enormous ratings success with the initial Nora Roberts’ adaptations, Mandalay Television produced the Nora Roberts II Collection, with four more all-new original movies: Northern Lights, Midnight Bayou, High Noon and Tribute. The second collection was seen by over 49 million viewers, and Northern Lights was one of the top rated cable movies in 2009. Mandalay Television recently completed the ninth installment in the franchise, Carnal Innocence, starring Gabrielle Anwar, which premiered on Lifetime in June of 2011.
Following his location based entertainment leadership experience with Loews, Guber expanded Mandalay into a national entertainment sports provider with Mandalay Sports Entertainment. He serves as Chairman of the Board of Directors for Mandalay Baseball Properties, which includes a national array of professional minor league affiliated baseball franchises and venues. Among the professional sports franchises that are owned and/or operated by Mandalay Baseball Properties are the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders, a Triple- A affiliate of the New York Yankees, the Oklahoma City RedHawks, a Triple-A affiliate of the Houston Astros, the Frisco RoughRiders, a Double-A affiliate of the Texas Rangers, and the Erie SeaWolves, a Double-A affiliate of the Detroit Tigers. In a second partnership with Magic Johnson, Mandalay Baseball Properties also owns the Dayton Dragons, a Single-A affiliate of the Cincinnati Reds, which broke the all time professional sports sellout record in 2011 with 815 games encompassing 11 seasons. Mandalay Baseball Properties recently entered the concessions business by forming a joint venture partnership with Professional Sports Catering, a full service food and beverage company that now provides concessions services for fifteen Minor League Baseball teams.
Peter Guber is Co-Chairman of Mandalay Digital Group (MNDL), a leading global mobile data services provider. MDG is at the convergence of internet media content and mobile communications. MDG delivers a mobile services platform that works with mobile operators and third-party publishers to provide portal management, user interface, content development and billing technology. This proprietary platform enables the responsible distribution of mobile entertainment by the mobile operators.
Guber is a pre-IPO investor in Demand Media who appointed him to its board of directors in early 2010. Demand Media, a leading content and social media company, is at the forefront of the new media landscape with a unique model and rare expertise that makes it an attractive online partner for traditional entertainment and publishing companies. With a comScore Top 20 U.S. network of premium online brands, a breakthrough Internet content studio and an enterprise social media platform deployed on some of the world’s leading digital destinations such as eHow, LIVESTRONG.com, Cracked, Trails.com and GolfLink, Demand Media makes it possible for more than 100 million people each month to engage in conversations and form passionate communities around relevant content.
Guber is the owner and serves as the Co-Executive Chairman of the Golden State Warriors. As co- managing partner, he joined Joe Lacob as the driving forces behind the current ownership group’s NBA record-setting bid to purchase the Warriors in 2010. Guber and Lacob recently announced their plans to 4
build a new start-of-the-art arena on the waterfront in San Francisco. The Warriors intend to play their first game in their new home in 2017.
Prior to the 2011-2012 season, the Warriors ownership group acquired the D-League team, the Dakota Wizards, and moved the franchise to Santa Cruz, California. With a new team name and location, the Santa Cruz Warriors are the official NBA D-League affiliate of the Golden State Warriors and play in the newly built Kaiser Permanente Arena.
In 2012, in a third partnership with Magic Johnson, Peter Guber became an owner of the Los Angeles Dodgers, the storied Major League Baseball franchise, led by the Guggenheim Baseball Management group. The ownership group has deep local roots which will bode well for the franchise, its fans and the Los Angeles community.
Also in 2012, Guber and Mandalay Entertainment partnered with CAA Sports, the world’s leading athlete representation agency and Mike Tollin, Emmy and Peabody Award-winning film and television producer/director to create Mandalay Sports Media. With Rich Battista as CEO, Mandalay Sports Media creates, finances, and acquires operating businesses, intellectual property, and varied enterprises within the sports and media sectors, as well as develops high-quality sports-themed entertainment programming for distribution across multiple platforms including film, television, mobile and digital. Mandalay Sports Media has several entertainment projects in development with ESPN, Turner Sports, New Line Cinema, and Incognito Pictures, among other distribution media venues.
In addition, in 2012, Guber joined with Guggenheim Partners and Allen Shapiro as CEO to purchase Dick Clark Productions. Peter Guber was named Chairman of the company. Founded by the late Dick Clark, Dick Clark Productions is a leading independent producer of television programming including perennial hits such as the American Music Awards, Golden Globe Awards, Academy of Country Music Awards, Dick Clark’s New Year’s Rockin’ Eve and So You Think You Can Dance. The company currently has additional projects in various stages of production including the ALMA Awards, American Giving Awards, CBS Sports Network’s Rome, the Miss Universe and Miss USA pageants, NFL Honors, the upcoming nationally syndicated Bloopers, the Los Angeles Food & Wine and Pebble Beach Food & Wine lifestyle festivals, and the 3rd Annual Streamy Awards, coming in 2013. Dick Clark Productions owns, maintains and licenses one of the world’s most unique and extensive entertainment libraries.
Guber is a full professor at the UCLA School of Theater, Film & Television and has been a member of the faculty for over 30 years. In addition to his digital media and sports entertainment courses, he teaches an annual course called “Navigating a Narrative World,” which explores the MAGIC of story as “state of the heart” technology for creating emotional connections with others. Guber also co-teaches “Critical Milestones in Preparing for a Life in Leadership,” an annual MBA course with the dean of UCLA’s Anderson School of Management. He is a member of the UCLA Foundation Board of Trustees, as well as the winner of UCLA’s prestigious Service Award for his accomplishments and association with the university. He received his honorary doctorate in Fine Arts from the University of Connecticut, was named Albert Gallatin Fellow at New York University; is a recipient of Syracuse University’s George Arents Pioneer Award, the highest honor that can be given an alumnus, for his distinguished work in film; and is also a recipient of USC’s Dean’s Award for National Business Leadership.
Guber is the Chair of the Founding Board of Advisors for The Center for Managing Enterprises in Media, Entertainment & Sports (MEMES) at the UCLA Anderson School of Management. MEMES was established as the preeminent Center for thought leadership and management education in the global media, entertainment and sports industries. Through groundbreaking research and knowledge dissemination, innovative and interdisciplinary course offerings and blue-chip industry collaborations, the Center
is committed to developing global leaders who inspire creativity and innovation as well as drive leading– edge management practices that impact their organizations, communities and society as a whole.
A passionate, humorous and tireless motivator, Guber is a sought after speaker for corporations and global events. He is an Entertainment and Media Analyst for Fox Business News and has also appeared on ABC’s Good Morning America, NBC’s Today, CNBC’s The Big Idea with Donny Deutsch, MSNBC’s Countdown with Keith Olbermann, Fox News’s Your World with Neil Cavuto, Chris Matthews’ Hardball, CNBC’s WSJ with Maria Bartiromo, CNN Paula Zahn Now, CNBC’s Power Lunch and 20/20 with Elizabeth Vargas.
Guber was seen every Sunday morning for 6 years on American Movie Classics (AMC) cable network, as co- host of the critically acclaimed national TV show, Shootout, featuring the major stars and entrepreneurs of the entertainment industry. AMC moved Guber’s talents to prime time with StoryMakers, a series of one hour specials featuring such guests as Cameron Diaz, Penelope Cruz, Frank Langella, and Tom Cruise. Guber was most recently seen as co-host of In the House, a weekly, national half-hour news and interview show on Encore and KNBC. The show focused on industry trends in pop culture, providing a platform for major stars, key filmmakers and other creative and business leaders to comment on their industry.
A noted author, Guber co-wrote the best seller, Shootout, published by Penguin Putnam, which was released in hardcover and paperback and was the impetus of his long running TV show of the same title. In December 2007, Guber wrote the cover article for the Harvard Business Review titled, “The Four Truths of the Storyteller.” Guber also authored op-ed pieces for the New York Times and the San Francisco Chronicle. In March of 2011, Guber released his third book, Tell To Win – Connect, Persuade, and Triumph with the Hidden Power of Story, which became an instant #1 best seller in the New York Times, USA Today, Wall Street Journal and on Amazon.com. Fortune magazine chose Tell To Win as one of their “5 Business Books You Can Really Use” and Hudson Booksellers, retail book stores in airports throughout North America, chose Tell To Win as one of the “5 Best Business Books of the Year.”
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Term: 2018-2021 – Three-Year Term
Residing: Oslo, Norway
Chair, Athletes Advisory Commission
A five-time captain of the Irish National Lacrosse Team with 78 international caps to his credit, Sean Gibson is the first-ever Chair of the Federation of International Lacrosse (FIL) Athletes Advisory Commission (AAC). He was appointed to a three-year term as Chair of the AAC in December 2018.
As Chair, Gibson leads a six-member Commission responsible for representing the voice and perspective of athletes within the FIL governance structure.
A multisport athlete who excelled in lacrosse, soccer and volleyball while growing up in Canada, Gibson captained the Irish National Team in 2007, 2011, 2015, 2016 and 2017. He competed in three World Indoor Lacrosse Championships, three World Lacrosse Championships and three European Lacrosse Championships, earning a silver medal in the 2012 European Championship. Gibson’s 78 international caps make him the most–capped player in the history of Irish Lacrosse and among the leaders worldwide.
Gibson grew up in Lethbridge, Alberta, Canada and played volleyball and soccer at Lethbridge College from 1997-99, earning all-conference honors as a goaltender in 1999. He then transferred to St. Francis Xavier University in Nova Scotia, Canada, where he completed his post-secondary soccer career and began playing lacrosse on a competitive level while, earning a degree in Information Systems (Technology and Business).
Following his graduation from St. Francis Xavier University in 2004, Gibson moved to Ireland and immediately became involved with Ireland Lacrosse. In addition to his accomplishments as a player, Gibson has been instrumental in furthering the growth of lacrosse throughout Europe. He led the effort to develop the first-ever European Box Lacrosse Championship, which was held in Turku, Finland in 2017; establish the European Box Lacrosse Invitational, an annual event for National Teams, National Development Teams, officials and volunteers to gain international experience; and, establish an annual European Box Lacrosse Forum, which began in 2014.
Gibson has served as a member of the Ireland Lacrosse Board of Directors since 2011, the European Lacrosse Federation Board since 2017, and was head coach at the University of Liverpool in Liverpool, England from 2015-17.
Gibson now resides with his wife, Eva, and newborn daughter Joey in Oslo, Norway, where he works in the maritime freight sector as an Enterprise Architect for Klaveness AS, where he is responsible for leading digital transformation and aligning business initiatives with technology.