About this event
The entire sports industry—from teams and leagues to tech companies and investors—has navigated uncharted territory to stay in business. We have all been forced to adjust to the “new normal” when it comes to stadium operations, esports, athlete training, scouting, fan engagement and so much more. Adding to the tumultuous nature of 2020, we have also seen a profound social justice movement aimed at ending police brutality and systemic racism, with organizations looking inward to reflect on their own socially conscious decision-making. Where will the sports industry be in another six months? What parts of the “new normal” have had a positive impact? During this episode of The Way Back we’ll discuss where things stand and where the future of sports might be headed amidst a global pandemic.
Natara Holloway is the Vice President, Business Operations and Strategy of the NFL. Natara Holloway has worked with the NFL for over 15 years. She currently oversees football technology and innovation, administration and football pipeline development. Prior to joining Football Operations, Holloway served as NFL Vice President of Youth and High School Football and was responsible for driving growth and development of the football journey for young athletes aged 6-18. Holloway has also served as NFL Vice President of Brand, Marketing and Retail Development, where she and her team worked to engage with fans by creating compelling product experiences at key retailers and high-profile events. Holloway began working with retail in her previous role as the Vice President of Corporate Development – New Business, where her group explored new revenue generation concepts for the NFL. She had the lead role in the development of the first NFL retail pop-up store for women in New Orleans, for which the team was recognized with a Commissioner’s Innovation Award. Holloway has also previously worked in the Internal Audit department and has served as one of the three League Compliance Officers. She has earned certification as a Certified Public Accountant (CPA), Certified Internal Auditor (CIA) and a Certified Fraud Examiner (CFE). Holloway graduated magna cum laude from the University of Houston and currently serves on the board for the University of Houston Bauer School of Business and the University of Houston Power Athletics Task Force.
Rachel Jacobson is the President of the Drone Racing League (DRL), the global, professional drone racing property. She spearheads global partnerships and media rights deals, and leads the marketing and business development teams, bringing to DRL her legacy of creating transformative partnerships with leading sports and technology brands. Prior to DRL, Rachel spent 21 years at the NBA as their SVP of Global Partnerships, where she closed nearly $1 billion in partnership sales, and served as the Chief Business Development Officer at Landit, the market leader in personalized career pathing technology to increase the success and engagement of women and diverse groups in the workplace. Rachel has earned numerous accolades including being named a 2020 Fortune’s Most Powerful Women member, 2020 TechStars Sports Accelerator Mentor and a recipient of Sports Business Journal's 40 Under 40 Award.
Andrew Yaffe is the Vice President, Global Strategy & Innovation of the NBA. As the NBA’s Global Strategy & Innovation Group Lead, Andrew Yaffe oversees a team that drives the league’s corporate planning, strategic growth initiatives and innovation strategies. His team consults with the NBA’s senior leadership team on its key growth priorities, as well as other high-profile initiatives. Recent efforts have included coordinating strategies for the NBA Restart and planning for the 2020-21 NBA season. In addition, Yaffe and his team work closely with the NBA’s regional offices on international growth, including the Basketball Africa League. Yaffe has also led the NBA’s strategic partnership with HomeCourt, a mobile basketball training application that uses advanced machine learning and computer vision to unlock potential in every player, and serves as a Board Observer. In 2019, HomeCourt won Apple’s 2019 Design Award and was the recipient of the 2019 SportTechie Award in the Technology Category. Yaffe started his career at the NBA as an analyst in the Team Marketing and Business Operations Group, focused on team ticketing strategy and analytics. He began his professional career at McKinsey & Co, where he spent four years, including a stint as the Engagement Manager in the company’s New York office. Yaffe holds an M.B.A. from the Stanford Graduate School of Business and a Bachelor of Arts in Public Policy from Duke University. A native of New York City, Yaffe resides in the New York City area, with his wife Christen, daughter Hannah and Wheaten Terrier Durham.
Jen Booton | Senior Writer, SportTechie (moderator)
Registration is free. All registrants will receive a link to watch the recording once the session concludes.
Sports technology reporter
At SportTechie, we make sports smarter. Through immersive storytelling and industry-leading events, we connect you to the innovators and power brokers who are shaping the future of sports technology.
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