June 23, 2017 – Professional football’s Oakland Raiders is seeking an executive director of its charitable arm, the Raiders Foundation. To conduct the search, the team has enlisted Marquee Search, a recruitment firm that specializes in sports and entertainment. Marquee president Jeff Yocom is spearheading the assignment.
The Raiders Foundation, established two years ago, is committed to increasing community health through support of military families and youth development. The group is looking for a leader who is highly motivated and entrepreneurial. The individual will manage the foundation operations, guide and facilitate strategic decision-making, manage fundraising and oversee financial management.
A Look Inside the Role
The Raiders Foundation’s executive director will be charged with establishing partnerships, collaborations and strategic alliances to advance the group’s mission. The person will also be expected to increase the foundation’s impact and visibility through synergistic partnerships with diverse organizations. In addition, the new leader will develop relationships with business, philanthropic, academic and government leaders, as well as a pipeline of prospects. Soliciting donors is also part of the job.
The new director will also develop and implement a fundraising strategy to establish long-term viability. He or she will work with the National Football League Foundation to secure individual team contributions. Duties also include researching grant opportunities and writing grant proposals to corporations, foundations and government entities.
Requirements for the job include five years of management and relationship development experience in a non-profit development. The person must show the ability to drive diversified, scalable and sustainable non-profit fundraising programs. A strong understanding of the professional sports business, including the importance of working with the corporate partnership department is essential.
The Raiders recently retained Turnkey Search to lead the organization’s search for a new vice president of human resources. For that role, the team wants someone with a minimum of 10 years of HR experience, preferably in sports, entertainment, hospitality or a related field.
Sports & Entertainment Recruiting
Marquee Search recruits mid to senior level business professionals to sports and entertainment companies across North America and globally. The firm is currently leading searches for the New Orleans Pelicans and Saints, Bulldogs Sports Properties, the Green Bay Packers, Circuit of Americas, and the Seattle Sounders FC.
Mr. Yocom founded the firm in 2013 after 11 years with Game Face, where he executed hundreds of placements for its executive search division. Mr. Yocom specializes in the identification and delivery of mid- to senior-level front office professionals for sports teams, agencies, and related sports and entertainment properties. Developing strong relationships with candidates and clients is a major part of his role.
“I had the pleasure of working with Jeff to fill the key role of VP of corporate partnerships for the Raiders,” said Mark Sheaer, SVP and chief revenue officer for the Raiders. “His personal commitment to the search was evident from Day One. Jeff spent a lot of time and energy upfront to get to know me, the team and the organization at large. He didn’t hand me a predetermined list of candidates he was going to contact for the role.”
“He asked a lot about the organization’s new structure and worked hard to identify and vet each candidate and their references before he brought them to our attention. The result was a solid list of strong candidates and high quality interviews that made our decision a lot tougher than we had hoped, but we know we found a great fit for years to come.”
An Expansive Field
Sports & entertainment is one of the most rapidly growing sectors in executive search, with many C-suite-focused recruiting firms entering the field. Some specialize only in sports, but all are dedicated to providing sports-related executive search and leadership advisory services. In addition to Marquee Search they include: SRi, Turnkey, Nolan Partners, CarrSports Consulting, Korn Ferry, Fogler Consulting, Harvard Group International, Prodigy Sports, DHR International, Hartmann Mason, College Sports Solutions, Egon Zehnder, Heidrick & Struggles, Ascension Sports Partners, Russell Reynolds Associates, Diversified Search, Odgers Berndtson, Eastman & Beaudine, Alden Associates, Parker Executive Search, Neinas Sports Services and Collegiate Sports Associates.
Contributed by Scott A. Scanlon, Editor-in-Chief; Dale M. Zupsansky, Managing Editor; Stephen Sawicki, Managing Editor; and Chase Barbe, Managing Editor – Hunt Scanlon Media