Sports Agents

Olympian Gymnast Laurie Hernandez Goes Pro

Days before the 2016 Summer Olympic Games are set to begin in Rio De Janeiro, Brazil, US women’s gymnast Laurie Hernandez has decided to forego her collegiate eligibility and sign with sports and entertainment marketing firm Shade Global, according to

The 16-year-old New Jersey-native plans to continue in elite gymnastics for the next four years and compete for Team USA. She is set to compete in six events for Team USA this Olympics and is one of the sport’s upcoming stars.

“I am excited about what it means to compete at the highest level of this sport and really want to focus on elite gymnastics for the next four years,” said Hernandez. “This was not an easy decision to make, but by making the decision now, it allows me to focus entirely on gymnastics and how I can enjoy this sport that I love.”

Sheryl Shade, founder of the New York and Florida based Shade Global, has represented the top athletes in several sports who have competed in the Olympics, including: Gabrielle Davis (teammate of Hernandez), Paul Hamm, Shawn Johnson, Nastia Liukin and Mia Hamm. The company specializes in representation, brand extension and franchise management for a diverse portfolio of clients including Olympic athletes, documentary filmmakers and films, consumer product and media companies and public institutions.