Friday, July 18, 2008

Doug Logan Is Chosen As CEO of USA Track & Field

The USA Track & Field Board of Directors on Thursday approved top sports executive Doug Logan, the former Commissioner, President and CEO of Major League Soccer, as its next CEO.

Logan most recently has run Empresario, LLC of New York, a sports consulting and entrepreneurial firm that in 2001 was a consultant in the creation of the National Rugby League since leaving the MLS.

After three months of an executive search and much consternation from the track and field community, a decision has finally been made. Craig Masback abruptly left USA Track and Field in January for new endeavors with Nike as Director of Global Sports Marketing Division, leaving the organization in a lurch just eight months before the opening ceremony of the Olympic Games in Beijing.

Masback is credited with holding the organization together through arguably the sport’s toughest days during the doping era that brought down some of the biggest names at the time such as Marion Jones, Tim Montgomery, and Justin Gatlin.

Who is Doug Logan, you ask, the man charged with saving the sport from the brink of irrelevance?

For the last twenty years, Logan has been highly respected in sports circles as a very capable leader with extensive experience in the sports management game. He is considered the country's highest-ranking Hispanic American in sports management. By selecting Logan, the USATF Board gets an executive who is well known—a key factor in the relationship-driven world of sports marketing.

Although track and field is a sport, it is also a business, and Logan’s selection reinforces the governing bodies desire for a new business strategy. He transformed Major League Soccer’s television contracts from a time-buy to co-ventures, negotiating five-year broadcasting agreements with ABC, ESPN and Univision that more than doubled the number of national MLS games on the air. During his tenure MLS assets soared from $5 million per team to $20 million per team.

"We have said since we started the process of hiring a new CEO that it was more important to do it right than to do it quickly," USATF President Bill Roe said. "In Doug Logan, we know we have found the right CEO to take us into the next phase of growth. We are so pleased to get a person of his caliber to lead our organization, and we are excited to welcome him to the USATF family."

Logan is a bilingual sports and entertainment leader with a proven track record of generating long-term sponsor partnerships, television outreach and high fan attendance. In 1996, Sports Business Daily named Logan and MLS Sports Industrialist of the Year.

The MLS under Logan's leadership generated $120 million in multiple-year sponsorship commitments from Nike, AT&T, adidas, Puma, Umbro, Honda, MasterCard, PepsiCo, Anheuser-Busch and Bic.

The news of Logan’s hiring comes as a relief to many who were concerned about going into the Olympic Games without new leadership in place.

In its 29-year history, USA Track and Field has not had a CEO with such an extensive background in developing sponsorships, partnerships, and television deals. At first glance, Logan appears to be an ideal fit for the organization. He may be just what the doctor ordered for the sport.

USATF Board members also picked a seasoned businessman in Logan, who has experience in one of the most persistent challenges facing the sport – how, if at all, to deliver a user-friendly sport to the fan, while growing revenues and exposure in the United States.

"I believe the sport is poised for a major leap of growth," Logan said. "It may seem presumptuous for me to express goals at this early juncture. However, I will devote my energies to maintaining and improving the U.S. position at the top of the medal charts in World Championships and Olympic Games, and I will be a passionate messenger in our battle against Performance Enhancing Drugs.”

The first hurdle he will face as the new CEO is the pressing matter of dealing with the USOC’s demands to restructure of the USATF Board of Directors.

In Logan, the sport has an executive who has managed and grown another niche sport in Major League Soccer to the next level. He has been in the board rooms before and sealed some major deals.

That is what you get in Doug Logan.

By Jay Hicks.
Seed Runnerspace


  1. I have known Doug Logan since 1962. He will be an excellent leader for UASTF. His intensity and drive brings something to the organization that will raise awareness and enthusiasm in America track and field.
    It was a great choice by the board in selecting Doug. They made a fantastic decision.

  2. Doug Logan is a seasoned sports executive and USATF is fortunate to have him.

    It's always a good sign when his friends stop by to vouch for him.


    Jay Hicks