Harold J. VanderZwaag Distinguished Alumnus Award Winners l. to r.: Burke Magnus, Carolanne McAuliffe, Wade Martin, Neal Huntington
Neal Huntington, MS '92, Senior Vice President, Pittsburgh Pirates
Neal Huntington was named Senior Vice President and General Manager of the Pittsburgh Pirates in 2007. He and his staff have systematically restructured how the Pirates evaluate, acquire, develop and retain players and staff members with the goal of building the Pirates into a championship caliber organization. He has overseen the rebuilding and reconfiguration of the Pirates front office, scouting and coaching staff, as well as the retooling of the Pirates' 40 man roster and minor league system. Additionally, the Pirates have allocated significant resources into the first Pirates Farm System, moving from being one of the worst in MLB to among the top third in baseball. Prior to joining the Pirates, Neal worked as a Special Assistant to the General Manager for the 2007 American League Central Division Champion Cleveland Indians. He served as an adviser for GM Mark Shapiro. Huntington began his association with the Indians in 1998 as the Assistant Director of Minor League Operations. In 1998, Neal took over as Cleveland's Director of Player Development. He also oversaw the Indians' player development system, including Latin American Field Operations.
Burke Magnus, MS '94, Senior Vice President, College Sports Programming, ESPN
Burke Magnus joined ESPN in 1995 as a program associate, and in 1996 was promoted to program planner. In 1998 he advanced to program manager and later became director of brand management primarily responsible for ESPN's men's college basketball programming and scheduling. Under Magnus' direction, men's college basketball ratings increased over multiple consecutive seasons and new initiatives such as Bracket Buster Saturday and College Game Day (basketball version) were introduced. In 2006 Magnus was named to the distinguished Sports Business Journal Forty Under 40. For his efforts, in 2005, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch named Magnus the "fourth most powerful person in college basketball."
In 2008 Magnus was promoted to ESPN senior vice president, college sports programming. In that role Magnus is responsible for the strategic direction of college football, college basketball and NCAA Championships on the various ESPN platforms.
Wade Martin, MS '96, President and CEO, Alli
Wade Martin joined NBC Sports in the fall of 2003 as general manager of Action Sports. He spearheaded the creation and development of the Dew Tour, which launched in 2005 as the first season-long professional tour for actions sports. By 2007, Martin had been promoted to President and the Dew Tour was recognized as the most successful series in action sports, boasting the largest media commitment, largest total viewership and on-site attendance, and a blue-chip roster of partners including Mountain Dew, Toyota, Sony PlayStation, and Nike. That same year, the company announced its first major expansion initiative with the creation of the Winter Dew Tour. In 2008, that expansion continued with Martin leading the formation of Alli, the Alliance of Actions Sports, as the new umbrella brand and company. Under Alli, Martin developed and negotiated partnerships with leading properties in new sport verticals, created a media arm (Alli TV and www.Allisports.com), and opened the Carlsbad, California office to oversee the creative, editorial and consumer products group and e-commerce business, the Alli Shop. In total, Alli manages four properties and over 61 events.
Carolanne McAuliffe, BS '90, Vice President of Marketing, NBA
As Vice President of Marketing, Carolanne McAuliffe oversees the day-to-day relationship and management of the NBA's marketing, branding and media agency, Goodby, Silverstein & Partners. She handles marketing initiatives, strategy and media planning as well as budgeting and execution of the NBA's brand campaign. She also handles all creative production through NBA assets, including television, print, radio, digital, social media, events, and the league's 30 teams. Prior to the NBA, McAuliffe worked in collegiate sports for Host Communications in a variety of capacities, most recently as the Vice President of Client Development. She also served as the Vice President and General Manager of its Women's Sports Division. McAuliffe's joined Host in 1995 as Director of Marketing and General Manager of Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference (MAAC) Properties. She began her career at the MAAC, serving first as the Director of Media Relations and then advanced to Director of Marketing.