January 6, 2020 – Executive search firm SRi has recruited Sally Bolton as the new CEO of the All England Lawn Tennis Club (AELTC) succeeding Richard Lewis. Partner David James led the assignment.
With a proven track record of sports and event management experience at both an executive and non-executive level within the sports industry, Ms. Bolton was recognized by the AELTC committee for her depth of experience, vision and positivity in managing a wide variety of external and internal stakeholders at both a strategic and operational level together with her commitment to striking a balance between innovation and evolutionary progress.
“Sally has a well-established pedigree in international event experience across a variety of sports with her background in rugby league, athletics and here at Wimbledon over four championships,” said Ian Hewitt, AELTC chairman. “Her ability to combine a depth of operational knowledge with quality strategic thinking will make a significant contribution to the future strategy and direction of the AELTC and she will be an excellent leader of our able executive team. Our committee felt that she is perfectly placed to assist us in embracing and delivering on our future challenges and opportunities.”
Ms. Bolton has been working in sports since 1996. Having been CEO of Wigan Rugby League and Orrell Rugby Union clubs she then delivered numerous events at major stadiums such as Wembley, Old Trafford, Millennium Stadium and Murrayfield. Ms. Bolton went on to lead the delivery of the Rugby League World Cup in 2013. She then spent two years as managing director of the organizing committee for the London 2017 World Athletics Championships, before joining the AELTC as head of corporate affairs in 2016. Taking on the position of strategic planning and operations director in 2018, Ms. Bolton has been part of four championships at Wimbledon, and played a significant role in the acquisition of the Wimbledon Park Golf Club. She has been a board member of U.K. Sport since 2018. She is the board’s diversity champion and has been a member of the major events panel since 2013.
“I am delighted that Sally has been appointed as my successor,” said Mr. Lewis. “She is the ideal person to take on this wonderful role. I look forward to working with her as we begin the process of a smooth and well managed transition. In the meantime, I look forward to working with Ian and the rest of the committee on the delivery of a successful championships in 2020 before I finally step down.”
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“I am thrilled to be appointed as the next CEO of the AELTC,” said Mr. Bolton. “In my four years working here to date I have learned what a special place the All England Club is and to be asked to lead such a fantastic organization through the next period of its history is a tremendous honor and privilege.”
International in Scope
SRi is an international executive search firm focused on the sports, media and entertainment sectors. It has wholly-owned offices in Australia, Canada, China, Germany, Singapore, Switzerland, the U.K. and the U.S. The firm has worked with some of the biggest brand names in media and sport to secure top talent over the course of its 20-year history. Among them: HBO, BSkyB, IMG Media, News Corp, Harvard Business Review, Taunton Press, F+W, Visible World, National Geographic, Andrews McMeel Publishing, Sunset + Vine, BBC America, Univision, Huffington Post, World Rugby, the Rugby Football Union, England and Wales Cricket Board, Wasserman, ESPN, Lagadere, Eurosport, Discovery Channel, BT Sport and the NBA. SRi’s clients include international rights holders, professional clubs & teams, international federations, governing bodies, corporate sponsors, venues, major events, broadcasters, media owners, agencies and sporting goods brands.
Based in London, Mr. James is responsible for the management and delivery of SRi’s senior executive search work for a wide range of national governing bodies, sports clubs, agencies, brands, rights holders, digital media outlets and broadcasters.
Contributed by Scott A. Scanlon, Editor-in-Chief; Dale M. Zupsansky, Managing Editor; and Stephen Sawicki, Managing Editor – Hunt Scanlon Media