TurnkeyZRG Seeks CEO for United States Soccer Federation

August 3, 2022 – TurnkeyZRG has been chosen by the United States Soccer Federation, the national governing body for the sport of soccer, to lead its search for a new chief executive officer. Current CEO Will Wilson announced last month that he will be stepping down at the end of October to pursue new professional ventures and opportunities.

“The U.S. Soccer Federation’s ideal candidate will derive from a diverse pool of experienced candidates with significant experience in a consumer-facing industry within complex organizations,” said TurnkeyZRG. “The CEO’s role is to provide the overall responsibility, accountability, and authority for managing United States Soccer in accordance with the organization’s bylaws. Under the oversight of the board of directors, through the leadership of the executive team, and in collaboration with committees, task forces, and athletes, the CEO will be tasked with propelling the federation collectively further toward an innovative business structure for the future while retaining the federation’s mission and values.”

The Chicago-based non-profit’s next leader will be expected to have commercial acumen, said TurnkeyZRG. The individual will be charged with conferring with the board to establish an overall strategic and tactical business strategy and objective for the organization. He or she must also formulate United States Soccer’s quadrennial and annual business plans, utilizing a more detailed approach to finance and financial matters, including but not limited to accounting, banking, finance, and other areas, to drive the organization forward.

The federation’s new CEO must employ an ambitious and entrepreneurial approach to identifying and creating new revenue growth opportunities in conjunction with renewing and reimagining partnerships, including with media partners, sponsors, co-branding opportunities, sponsor activation, and licensing, said the search firm. Establishing effective fundraising programs and initiatives with individual donors and ensuring proper stewardship of such donor gifts is essential.

Key Responsibilities

The CEO will be charged with overseeing United States Soccer’s budget and P&L, including all financial matters and commercial endeavors, and manage the receipt, deposit, and allocation process to the organization, its athletes, and membership base. The individual must also review and establish financial planning, budgeting, reporting, and administrative protocols to ensure the accuracy and integrity of the organization’s financial information, reporting and disclosure requirements, internal controls, adherence to the United States Soccer bylaws, and other compliance requirements, holding the highest ethical behavior at all levels of the organization.

Servant leadership will also be essential, said TurnkeyZRG. The new CEO must display thought leadership, working collaboratively with the other leaders within the organization and the entire USOPC movement. He or she must ensure continued consideration of United States Soccer as an innovative pioneer, and in constant pursuit of excellence, especially during challenging times that require ingenuity, innovation, creativity, entrepreneurial spirit, and new approaches.

Candidates should have 15-plus years’ work experience at well-run organizations. Also required is a record of management experience with media, marketing, ticket sales, communications, marketing partnerships, fiscal/financial planning, budgeting, and reporting. Risk management and fiscal/financial systems and controls is essential. Association or sports national governing body experience is a plus.

Related: NCAA Selects TurnkeyZRG to Lead President Search

A leadership quotient with a record of anticipating future trends, staying ahead of trends, and leading diverse, dispersed, decentralized organizations, particularly through challenging times and evolving circumstances, is critical, said the search firm. Prospects should also have a bachelor’s, master’s, or other post-graduate degrees in business, law, non-profit management, public policy, or related field preferred; intellectual curiosity and commitment to lifelong learning. Prior experience working with or on a board is strongly preferred.

TurnkeyZRG Seeks Head Baseball Coach for Yale
TurnkeyZRG has been called in by Yale University to lead its search for a new head baseball coach. John Stuper, who has coached the team since 1992, recently announced his retirement. Candidates should have the ability to organize and manage all facets of the school’s program: recruiting, scouting, individual instruction, budget planning, monitoring academic progress and the success of student-athletes, and general day-to-day operations. The new coach will be expected to develop a varsity program within the parameters of the structure and regulations of the Ivy League, the NCAA, and the university. The role calls for formulating and setting the strategies of play and conditioning of student-athletes. This individual will be responsible for training and conditioning student-athletes. The coach independently determines and shapes the strategy, technical aspects, and game preparation, as well as teaches team concepts.

Since its founding in 1913 as the United States Football Association, the United States Soccer Federation has played an integral part in charting the course for the sport in the U.S. The federation is comprised of youth and adult organizations, as well as professional leagues. The non-profit has 113 organization members across the country. Bringing to fruition the commitment to alternative versions of the sports, the U.S. Soccer Federation is also made up of both U.S. Men and Women’s Para National Team, U.S. Men’s Futsal National Team, and U.S. Men’s and Women’s Beach Soccer National Team.

Serving Sports, Media and Entertainment Organizations

Founded in 1996, TurnkeyZRG is a specialized talent recruitment/executive search firm filling C-level, senior-level and mid-management-level positions throughout sports, media, and entertainment. Over the past 25 years, the firm has filled more than 1,400 positions. TurnkeyZRG helps teams, leagues, stadiums, arenas, theaters, college athletic departments, events, sponsors, agencies, media companies, private equity companies and other clients identify, recruit, and hire the best management talent.

Len Perna, chairman and CEO of TurnkeyZRG, has 30-plus years of experience in the sports and entertainment industry, with senior-level management experience in sales, event marketing and management, sponsorships, venue feasibility and development, facility operations, licensing, and legal affairs. Since founding Turnkey, Mr. Perna has managed over 1,400 executive searches, according to the firm.

Related: TurnkeyZRG Retained by Pac-12 Conference to Lead Chief People and Inclusion Officer Search

Contributed by Scott A. Scanlon, Editor-in-Chief; Dale M. Zupsansky, Managing Editor; and Stephen Sawicki, Managing Editor – Hunt Scanlon Media

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