Sports Business

Tomorrow Is Your Chance To Network With The Pro’s

I am currently in Tampa, already had some very productive meetings, and plan to head to the Yardbarker/GQ/Jack Daniels party hosted by Terrell Owens tonight.  Tomorrow, I will head to an event titled, Network with the Pros.  I just received a press release about the event and am happy to pass along the information.  If you will be there, make sure you network with me, whether you consider me a pro or not.

Every year, hundreds gather to “Network with the Pro’s”, an elite networking experience of hand picked athletes (retired and active), celebrities, and top executives.

Last year’s successful event was at the Wrigley Mansion in Arizona. This year’s event is hosted at and sponsored by Robb and Stucky (International Plaza), The Strand, Budweiser, and Athletes and Executives. The massive luxury furniture store will close down the entire upstairs and most of its downstairs areas to make room for custom designed and very private VIP networking rooms, a press room for red carpet interviews, and a 100 item silent auction. Along with of course the classic amenities of gourmet food, drink, and live music.

Hand picked invitees for the event range from the local up and coming executives to the respected local mainstays. But the wow factor for everyone will be the opportunity to network with top level executives and CEO’s from major national and international corporations including but not limited to: Anheuser Busch, M&M Mars, Adidas, Nike, Sports Illustrated, XM, Red Bull, Lear Jet, Marriott, and Raymond James.

Of course there will also be a fair share of politicians, sports agents, and even Olympic Committee officials coming to tag their piece of the action.

“Business will be done at this event. This is not a shake a hand and lets exchange small talk. The entire event is centered around making connections and making business happen. People come to this event every year- fly in from all over the country- expecting to sign deals and start on the path to new negotiations” says Jenn Greacen, Executive Director of Red Frog,  the Coordinating host of this years event.

Pro player sightings will include Hall of Famer John Hannah who’s charity foundation Fourth and Goal Unites will benefit from the massive silent auction featuring items from the traditional signed Peyton Manning jersey or a Bruce Springsteen Hand Signed Guitar, to the exceptionally unusual items like a Tony Hawk signed skateboard or a Michel Phelps signed swim cap.

A confirmed 50 pro-athletes are registered to attend including retired local resident Seth Joyner, our own Bucs local Dave Moore, two time Super Bowl Champ Leonard Marshall, and MLB baseball great Curt Shilling.

“What makes this event unusual and unlike any other is the fact that it is not a party. It is held during business hours, you can’t ask to get on the list, you can’t buy a ticket, it isn’t about the food or the glitz or glam, it’s just about business. That’s why our people love it. That’s why everyone wants on the list year after year.” Says Alan Anastos, co-founder of Athletes and Executives.

Network with the Pros will take place at Robb and Stucky in International Plaza on Friday, January 30th 2009 from 1-5PM. For security reasons, invitees including press must register in advance at and bring proof of ID or press credentials to be granted access.

By Darren Heitner

Darren Heitner created Sports Agent Blog as a New Year's Resolution on December 31, 2005. Originally titled, "I Want To Be A Sports Agent," the website was founded with the intention of causing Heitner to learn more about the profession that he wanted to join, meet reputable individuals in the space and force himself to stay on top of the latest news and trends.

Heitner now runs Heitner Legal, P.L.L.C., which is a law firm with many practice areas, including sports law and contract law. Heitner has represented numerous athletes and sports agents as legal counsel. He has also served as an Adjunct Professor at Indiana University Bloomington from 2011-2014, where he created and taught a course titled, Sport Agency Management, which included subjects ranging from NCAA regulations to athlete agent certification and the rules governing the profession. Heitner serves as an Adjunct Professor at the University of Florida Levin College of Law, where he teaches a Sports Law class that includes case law surrounding athlete agents and the NCAA rules.