Today@Sam Article

Series To Delve Into Pro, Club Soccer Management

Nov. 2, 2015
SHSU Media Contact: Natasha Rider

Since 2011, the Sam Houston State University sport management program has brought together leading senior management officials in some of the state’s largest sporting organizations to provide insight into the roles they play and the challenges they face.

The fifth annual “The Mind of a Sport Executive” forum will continue this tradition on Nov. 19, when Houston Dynamo and Dash soccer clubs executive Amber Cox will discuss her work at 7 p.m. in The Woodlands Center Room 101.

Amber CoxCox, vice president and chief marketing officer of the two clubs, recently joined the Dynamo after serving as associate commissioner for women’s basketball with the Big East conference since 2013. She also spent nine seasons with the WNBA’s Phoenix Mercury and held the role of president and chief operating officer for the final two years of her tenure. 

In her current role she also is a part of a senior leadership team that oversees BBVA Compass Stadium and Houston Sports Park.

“She’s been recognized for her fast climb in the business and has an impressive resume, with a lot of relevant work experience,” said Ryan Zapalac, SHSU associate professor of kinesiology. “Over the years, the forum has focused on a number of issues relating to the sport industry, and we’re excited to share how Amber’s experiences have shaped her career.”

Her presentation will be moderated by David Brady, the vice president for marketing at the Houston Zoo and the in-stadium voice of the Houston Texans.

The “Mind of ” series provides a platform for top-level sport executives to share their knowledge and experience with those interested in pursuing a career in the industry.

It also was designed to increase awareness of SHSU’s sport management program and to help sport fans understand all that goes into sporting events and productions.

Some of the topics of past forums have included the psychology behind the behaviors of sporting fans; issues related to the jobs of sport executives and how they effectively and efficiently run their organizations; and how executives handle the stress of managing the high expectations of fans.

“This year’s event will be structured a little differently,” Zapalac said. “Instead of a large panel of experts, we’ll host a number of these events throughout the year to go more in-depth with one person.”

“The forum always provides valuable information for students, even those outside of sport management such as business and communications majors,” said Brent Estes, SHSU associate professor in the sport management program. “Really, anyone in the community interested in learning more about how the industry works would enjoy the event.”

The “Mind of a Sport Executive” is free and open to the public. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. and light refreshments will be served prior to the event.

Seating is limited and attendees are encouraged to arrive early. The event also will be simulcast on the web at

For more information, contact Zapalac at 936.294.4575, and for more information about the sport management program, visit

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