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Mayor, Sports Pros to talk “The Business of Sports” at OCU
Members of the local business community are invited to learn about the business side of sports during the next Meinders School of Business Boardroom Briefing and luncheon at Oklahoma City University. “The Business of Sports” will be held from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. Sept. 18 in the Kerr McGee Auditorium at the Meinders School of Business, located at N.W. 27th St. and Blackwelder Ave. Doug Sauter, coach of the Oklahoma City Blazers, will join Oklahoma City Mayor Mick Cornett; Dave Alberga, CEO of Active Network, Inc; Kevin Dresser and Kara Slavonic, Reality Check Studios producers; Jim Traber, sports talk show host; and Sean O’Grady, champion boxer to speak at the event. Presentations will address the City of Oklahoma City “Entering the Golden Age,” the challenges of a sports start-up, the role of TV and graphics in NASCAR and making bold career moves. Lunch will be provided and a question-and-answer session will wrap up the event. Cornett has made education and jobs top priorities during his term as mayor. He is well known for securing an NBA team and for putting the city on a diet, but Cornett is also a tireless advocate for other Oklahoma City issues and has spearheaded initiatives aimed at improving city streets, creating more sidewalks and developing better public transportation. He was recently elected as a trustee of the U.S. Conference of Mayors, the highest governing body of that organization. He is also the national president of Republican mayors and spent 20 years in local television news and sports before starting his own business and entering politics. Sauter is the winningest coach in Central Hockey League history. During Sauter’s 13-season run as head coach for the Oklahoma City Blazers, the team has qualified for the playoffs 10 times, won seven CHL division regular season titles, four regular season championships, made three CHL finals appearances and won two CHL championships. Sauter is one of only two coaches in North American professional hockey to have won 1,200 games and is the first to eclipse the 500-win mark among CHL coaches. He enters this season as the most tenured head coach in North American professional hockey and the third most tenured of all North American professional sports. Alberga is CEO of Active Network Inc. The Active Network serves a customer base including local governments, parks and recreation departments, golf courses, non-profits, sports organizations and associations, educational organizations and consumer products corporations throughout the United States, Canada, Europe, Australia and New Zealand. He has strong management consulting and brand management expertise from his work with the Boston Consulting Group and Procter & Gamble. Alberga serves on the board of Running USA, a national non-profit trade organization dedicated to improving the status of road racing and long-distance running in the United States. Slavonic began working for Reality Check Studios, an LA graphic design company specializing in broadcast, television, graphics and motion picture special effects, in 2006. Clients include CBS Sports, NFL Network, ESPN, The Weather Channel and DirecTV. Slavonic is currently an associate producer of “NASCAR Hotpass” on DirecTV, a subscription-based package tailored for NASCAR fans. Dresser began working at FOX Sports in 1998. He served as an associate producer in remote production for their coverage of the NFL on FOX, the Cotton Bowl and the MLB on FOX. He also worked in the studio as a graphics producer and developing broadcast graphics for both MLB and NASCAR on FOX. During his time at FOX Sports, he earned four Sports Emmy Awards for his work on the MLB and NASCAR on FOX. In 2007, Dresser began working with Reality Check Studios to work on a project with DirecTV and its coverage of “NASCAR HotPass.” Traber, a popular Oklahoma City sports talk show host, was a starting quarterback for the Oklahoma State University football team and a major league baseball player for the Baltimore Orioles. His involvement with sports talk radio began after his retirement from professional sports. He hosts “The Locker Room” along with fellow sports radio personality Mike Steely. He also co-hosted “Jim Traber and The Fat Jack Show,” a weekly syndicated sports program. O’Grady began boxing professionally in 1975. In 1980, he participated in his first world title fight at the World Boxing Council’s Lightweight Championship. O’Grady later signed a contract with the USA Network as a boxing analyst on “USA Tuesday Night Fights.” He went on to broadcast fights with FOX Sports Network and lent his voice for the video game, Knockout Kings. In 1992 he was inducted into the World Boxing Hall of Fame and in 1999 he began appearing as a color commentator on the “Toughman” show on the F/X channel. Tickets for the conference are $25. On-line registration is available at www.okcu.edu/business/register.aspx. For more information, contact Melissa Cory at (405) 208-5540 or mcory@okcu.edu.