Dionna Widder public
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Women Blazers is a podcast that features interviews with women in the sports industry who are either breaking barriers or on a journey to blaze trails in the front office. Through the experiences of others, insights can be gained, new opportunities can be created, and many can be inspired.
 
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In this episode we welcome Carley Knox, President of Business Operations for the Minnesota Lynx. Carley started out as a Division 1 soccer player with the goal to coach the game she loves, but she ultimately took a path beyond the field and that would allow her to live out her passion of fighting for women’s equality. Through the power of sports an…
 
In this episode we welcome Allie Dicken. Allie serves as the Director of Brand Marketing for the San Francisco 49ers of the NFL. Allie started out knowing she wanted to work in professional sports while in High School and that vision helped drive her forward to make that dream a reality. Focused on contributing to the brand purpose, she left no sto…
 
In this episode we welcome Erika Swilley, Vice President of Community & Social Responsibility for the Detroit Pistons. Erika shares her career path, which has been a journey of serving communities and making an impact in the lives of others through the power of sports. Never settling, never stopping, just focused to create a life of purpose by lead…
 
In this episode we welcome Lisa Walker, SVP of Business Development College Athletics for Eventellect. Lisa shares her career journey, starting out on a path to become a lawyer with the pursuit of a role in politics, but ultimately followed her passion to work in Collegiate Athletics - energized by the game and strengthened by the people who suppor…
 
In this episode we welcome Emily Jaenson as our featured guest. Emily serves as the General Manager for the Reno Aces of Minor League Baseball and was the first women to hold this position in Triple-A ball. Emily shares her career journey, starting out in the Chicago Bulls sales internship program which led to a path where she discovered a passion …
 
In this episode we welcome Molly Wurdack-Folt as our featured guest. Molly serves as the VP of Corporate Partnership Activation for Olympia Entertainment which includes the Detroit Tigers of the MLB and Detroit Red Wings of the NHL. Molly shares her incredible experiences and learnings leading and growing in the sports industry. Powered by passion …
 
In this episode we welcome Krystle Hogan as our featured guest. Krystle serves as the VP of Ticket Sales & Service for the LA Clippers of the NBA. Krystle shares her incredible journey breaking into the sports industry and growing into the leader she is today. She pursued her curiosities, displayed perseverance and patience, and has been surrounded…
 
In this episode we welcome Catherine Carlson as our featured guest. Catherine serves as the SVP/Revenue & Strategy for the Philadelphia Eagles of the NFL. You’ll hear her amazing journey, which started 30 years ago in her home country of Australia where she fell in love with sports. As a student of the industry, she came to the states to earn her M…
 
In this episode we welcome Elizabeth DiLullo Brown as our featured guest. Elizabeth serves as the SVP/Chief Marketing Officer for Little League Baseball. You’ll hear Liz share her amazing journey as she has knocked her career out of the park growing from agency life to becoming Little League’s first female senior executive. Her impressive path is t…
 
In this episode we welcome Vanessa Scott as our featured guest. Vanessa serves as the Director of Accounting for Houston Dynamo FC, Houston Dash, and BBVA Stadium. You’ll hear Vanessa share her incredible journey, starting out as a track athlete at Tulane University where she had to evacuate after her third day on campus due to Hurricane Katrina. T…
 
In this episode we welcome Ashley Clinkscale as our featured guest. Ashley serves as the Senior Vice President of Communications, Community & Diversity for the Portland Trailblazers. Ashley has had an incredible journey powered by her passion for storytelling and by building strong relationships with an expansive network. Her authenticity, hard wor…
 
In this episode we welcome Neda Tabatabaie as our featured guest. Neda serves as the Vice President of Business Analytics & Technology for the San Jose Sharks. Neda is one of the pioneers of business analytics and intelligence in our industry. Her dedication, hard work, no fear mentality, and appreciation for a great work culture have earned her a …
 
In this episode we welcome Abbey Mathis as our featured guest. Abbey serves as the Sr. Director of Premium Hospitality Development for the Cleveland Cavaliers. As a natural competitor most of her life, Abbey had aspirations of going pro as a soccer player and found herself going pro as a key contributor in the front office of a professional sports …
 
In this episode we welcome Amanda Verhoff as our featured guest. Amanda is the President of The Association of Luxury Suite Directors (ALSD), which is where she dedicated her entire career to date starting out as an intern. She is an authentic and passionate industry leader, who plays a significant role in inspiring the innovation of the premium fa…
 
In this 21st episode we welcome Allison Howard as our featured guest. Allison serves as the Vice President of Corporate Partnerships for the 17x NBA Champion Los Angeles Lakers. Allison has an amazing story starting out as a civil engineer before making a complete career change into partnership sales, where her authentic charisma, hard work, and de…
 
In this 20th episode, I am beyond excited to welcome Liliahn Majeed. Lil has spent the last 15 years of her career with the NBA, recently serving as the Senior Vice President of Diversity & Inclusion. She is dedicated to purpose driven work and making a difference in our society and the lives of others. Lil is a 2020 SBJ Game Changer and since the …
 
In this episode we welcome Catie Griggs as our featured guest. Catie is the Vice President and Chief Business Officer for Atlanta United of Major League Soccer. You’ll hear Catie share her unique journey, not knowing she would end up in the sports industry- she followed her curiosity and interest in human connection as she blazed a career path that…
 
In this episode we welcome Samantha Hicks as our featured guest. Samantha is the Chief Revenue Officer for the Reno Aces and Reno 1868 FC of MiLB and USL. You’ll hear her share her incredible journey, knowing sales was her pursued career and combining it with her passion for sports, she has blazed a path to the C-Suite. Crushing sales, being on and…
 
In this episode we welcome Shelly Cayette as our featured guest. Shelly is the Senior Vice President of Global Partnerships for the Cleveland Cavaliers of the NBA. You’ll hear Shelly share her incredible and unique journey, never allowing herself to be put in a box - she navigated up in her career through hard work, pursuing opportunities that exci…
 
In this episode we welcome Laura Dixon as our featured guest. Laura is the Head of External Affairs for the San Antonio Spurs of the NBA and the President and Founder of the Pro Sports Assembly.You’ll hear Laura share her incredible journey, after breaking into sports with the Dallas Sports Commission, she blazed forward with her entrepreneurial mi…
 
In this episode we welcome Qiava Martinez, Vice President of Premium Service and Guest Experience for the Las Vegas Raiders of the NFL. You’ll hear Qiava share her incredible journey, growing up in a large family and being raised by inspirational parents and alongside supportive siblings. It was in this environment that inspired Qiava to be a creat…
 
In this episode we welcome Jill Snodgrass, Vice President of Corporate Partnerships for the Philadelphia 76ers of the NBA. You’ll hear Jill share her incredible journey, breaking into sports with a life changing internship with the Atlanta Hawks and building a career on the foundation and love for service and building off that foundation over the p…
 
In this episode we welcome Kendall Tyson as my featured guest. Kendall is the Vice President of Strategy & Analytics for the Seattle Kraken of the NHL. You’ll hear Kendall share her journey, growing up as an athlete in Minnesota with a dedicated focus to become an Industrial Engineer. Combining her love for sports and optimizing complex processes, …
 
In this episode we welcome Jodee Bowness as my featured guest. Jodee is the Vice President of Ticket Sales & Service for the Colorado Avalanche of the NHL. In this episode you’ll hear her share her journey, basically born into the industry, having the opportunity to grow up observing her Dad lead a successful career in sports. But she was determine…
 
In this episode we welcome Erica Bernadas, Sr. Manager of Corporate Partnerships for the New Orleans Saints and Pelicans of the NFL and NBA as our featured guest. You’ll hear Erica share her journey starting out by taking an unexpected position in Inside Sales and finding early sales success that set the foundation for her career. Erica has followe…
 
In this episode we welcome Danita Johnson, President and Chief Operating Officer for the Los Angeles Sparks of the WNBA. You’ll hear Danita share her journey dedicated to leading a meaningful career in the Sports Industry, which without a doubt has been accomplished. Danita has had an incredible career path working in the WNBA, NBA and G-League, le…
 
In this episode we welcome Raven Jemison, Vice President/Team Marketing Business Operations at the NBA as our featured guest. You’ll hear Raven share her journey starting out on a path dedicated to becoming an Optometrist and discovering it was not the life she wanted to lead. She tapped into her passion and blazed a new path in the sports industry…
 
In this episode we welcome Kristen Kuhn, Senior Vice President of Partnership Marketing, Brand, & Community for LAFC of the MLS as our featured guest. In this episode you’ll hear Kristen share her journey starting out on a path of discovery, which required her to take bold moves that led to experiences that not only built the career she leads today…
 
In this episode we welcome Angela Spence, Director of Sales for the Atlanta Hawks and College Park Skyhawks as our featured guest. In this episode you’ll hear Angela share her journey starting out as a collegiate basketball player with plans to become a coach and making the decision to shift that dream which led to discovering the world of Ticket S…
 
In this episode we welcome Gretchen Sheirr, Chief Revenue Officer for the Houston Rockets. You’ll hear Gretchen share her journey starting out in ticket sales and deciding to double down and stick with it at a time when people didn’t see it has career path with lots of future upside. She now celebrates an incredible 19 season career and counting wi…
 
In this episode we welcome Sara Daniel, Vice President of Ticket Sales & Service for Carolina Hurricanes. In this episode you’ll hear how Sara, an elite collegiate athlete who won 2 Big Ten Championships and made 4 NCAA tournament appearance as a captain of her volleyball team at Ohio State University, broke into the sports industry and blazed a tr…
 
In this fourth episode we welcome Alison Roscoe, Vice President of Corporate Partnerships for Austin FC as our featured guest. In this episode you’ll hear how Alison navigated up through a non-traditional path, starting out managing pop up fan fest, and has had to face unscripted experiences that not only challenged her but motivated her growth in …
 
In this third episode we welcome Michele Kajiwara, Senior Vice President of Premium Sales for the Staples Center at AEG as our featured guest. In this episode you’ll hear how Michele landed a job at the Staples Center by chance and made the choice to navigate upward through a dynamic environment to lead the premium sales business for the sports & e…
 
In this second episode we welcome Jamie Morningstar, Senior Vice President of Ticket Sales & Service for the Milwaukee Bucks as our featured guest...or should I say Blazer? In this episode you’ll hear about how she followed her roots in sports to build an amazing sports career that has given her a lifetime of experiences that has taken her on a jou…
 
I am excited to be launching the first ever episode of this podcast with Lisa Feigenbaum, Vice President of Group, Premium Hospitality & Event Sales for the Sacramento Kings! In this episode you’ll hear about how she has repeatedly created opportunities for her career path when there were potential dead ends, her experience leading sales initiative…
 
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