Wednesday, October 15, 2014

S4SC: Legendary Former Marketing Executive Sonny Vaccaro to Speak at Drexel

Sonny Vaccaro, legendary former Nike marketing executive, will speak at the 2nd annual Sport for Social Change Conference presented by the Drexel Sport Management Student Union (SMTSU) on Friday, Nov. 14, 2014, the SMTSU announced Wednesday.

The title of Vaccaro’s lecture is “College Sport at a Crossroads: Perspectives on the Demise of NCAA,” which will feature his experiences helping to grow the Nike empire, while fighting for student-athlete rights along the way. He will deliver his lecture from 11-11:50 a.m. on Nov. 14.

Vaccaro is credited with launching the careers of a legion of NBA players, including LeBron James and Tracy McGrady. Within the sport industry, Vaccaro is known as the man who helped established the framework for modern sport marketing, realizing the power and potential of using college teams to showcase athletic shoes and apparel produced by Nike, Adidas and Reebok. He is credited with signing NBA great Michael Jordan to his first multi-million dollar endorsement deal.

In a career that has spanned more than five decades, Vaccaro’s influence has been felt throughout the industry. A fierce advocate for fair treatment and compensation of college athletes, Vaccaro has sought justice on behalf of college athletes for decades. That life work came into full focus in the case of O’Bannon v. NCAA (otherwise known as In re: NCAA Names, Likenesses, and Images) with a ruling that found that the NCAA had violated anti-trust laws as a result of its business practices.

The Sport for Social Change Conference will be held in the Academic Bistro (Sixth floor, Paul Peck Building) from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. The event is FREE and open to the public and Drexel community.

Vaccaro will join a speaker line-up that includes Tom Farrey of ESPN and the Aspen Institute (announced Tuesday) and Suzan Shown Harjo, Native American policy advocate (announced Monday).

The SMTSU is still working to finalize participants for a panel discussion, which will be announced upon completion. We will also have more exciting news to announce regarding Sonny Vaccaro and Tom Farrey coming soon, so stay tuned!

Follow the Drexel SMTSU and #S4SC on Twitter for event updates.

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