NBC Sports Group announces leadership changes

Jeff Foster is leaving GolfNow and Brian Bell is no longer CEO of SportsEngine

NBC Sports Group is shaking things up at the Golf Channel and GolfNow. Last week, an email went to employees announcing significant leadership changes at the two companies, as well as with SportsEngine. 

The biggest news is that Jeff Foster is departing. 

“After more than 20 years at Golf Channel and GolfNow, Jeff Foster will be leaving the company at the end of the year,” wrote Will McIntosh executive vice president at NBC Sports Group. “Jeff has helped build Golf Channel and GolfNow into what they are today. He was part of the original executive team that came up with the idea to get into the online tee time business, and has been part of every major strategic move along the way."

That’s not all. Brian Bell, CEO of SportsEngine, has decided to leave the company to pursue a new professional chapter. SportsEngine is the leading provider of sports relationship management software for youth sports. 

“Brian is one of the smartest, most strategic, and charismatic leaders I have ever met. He has made innumerable contributions to SportsEngine during his tenure with the organization, and we are a better company because of it,” McIntosh wrote.

Bell will stay on for a few months to help with the leadership transition. 

The email said that the company is creating a “centralized leadership team across GolfNow and SportsEngine.” 

“By aligning expertise from across the businesses, we will be more agile, innovative and competitive in an ever-evolving marketplace. Together, we will shift our businesses more sharply toward future growth,” McIntosh wrote.

Here’s what McIntosh outlined in his email:

  • Jerramy Hainline, who is now senior vice president and general manager of GolfNow, will lead sales, support, and serve as the local leader for GolfNow in Orlando. 
  • Brett MacKinnon is now senior vice president and general manager of SportsEngine. He will lead sales, customer success, and serve as the local leader of SportsEngine in Minneapolis.   
  • Jody Vogelaar, chief customer officer, will lead marketing for SportsEngine by adding GolfNow and GolfPass to his purview. 
  • Steve McElwee, chief technology officer, will expand his responsibilities overseeing product development and technology to SportsEngine as well. 
  • Brian Smith will lead the international expansion efforts for both GolfNow and SportsEngine, working with Hainline and MacKinnon to formulate a strategy to help us grow into existing and new territories. 
  • Justin Tupper will continue leading the content strategy and growth efforts associated with GolfPass, and will partner with Hainline and McElwee to properly utilize GolfNow and GolfPass to grow harmoniously.  
  • Julie Lusk, Head of Human Resources, and Jason Cuthbertson, CFO, will continue forward as the leaders of HR and Finance, respectively. 

“The old adage that change is inevitable has never been more applicable than it has been in the year 2020,” McIntosh wrote. “And while this type of change can be challenging, it brings tremendous opportunity for broader exposure, both for you individually and for our businesses.”

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