After nearly 20 years in the highest-profile sports and entertainment markets, she has clearly mastered her art.
Member of Adelphi University’s Profiles in Success program.
Vice President, Consumer Development, Los Angeles DodgersFavorite Professors: “I took a little something from many of my professors including Ron Feingold, Roger Reese, Gary Barrett, Harold Levine, and Ruth Skinner.”Favorite Class: “My Internship at the NBA which paved the way for my sports and entertainment career.”
Memories of Adelphi: “My Adelphi experience was eye-opening, career-changing. The people I met made me realize all of the opportunities the world of sports has to offer.”
Advice for students: “Don’t be deterred by anything as you strive to reach your goals. People who are willing to endure, end up achieving the most.”
A Fan with a Love for Business
Looking at Frann Vettor-Gray’s resume, it’s hard to believe her when she quips, “I never had a career strategy.” After nearly 20 years in the highest-profile sports and entertainment markets, Ms. Vettor-Gray has clearly mastered her art.
“I’m in the business of leveraging assets,” she says. “I love bringing companies together and finding ways to make their dollars work harder and smarter toward shared strategic goals.”
She has worked for and with many of the most famous brands in the world. After turning an internship with the National Basketball Association into her first sports marketing job, Ms. Vettor-Gray has gone on to Major League Baseball, the Centennial Olympic Games, Coca-Cola, and Universal Studios. She’s now working for CurtCo Media, the publishers of the Robb Report.
“I started out with the NBA as a licensing coordinator and then a sales manager,’ says Ms. Vettor-Gray, who received an M.A. in Sport Management from the Ruth S. Ammon School of Education’s Department of Exercise Science, Health Studies, Physical Education and Sport Management. “I knew there was incredible potential to increase awareness and drive revenues for the NBA by working directly with retailers to establish in-store NBA concept shops.”
After contributing to tripling the NBA’s licensing revenues, she was recruited by Major League Baseball to expand the market share enjoyed by America’s pastime. In less than two years, she helped to increase retail licensing revenues by $400 million.
Ms. Vettor-Gray has made innovation a hallmark of her career. As director of the Centennial Olympic Games’ licensing and marketing operation, she developed a relationship which brought their product to QVC television, still in its nascent stages. That exposure led to Olympic Games exclusive shows, and sparked fashion shows and successful direct mail catalogues. She contributed to building a four-year, $1.5 billion business around a 16-day event.
After the closing ceremony, Ms. Vettor-Gray stayed in Atlanta, taking a position with soft-drink giant Coca-Cola. Her marketing strategy was to leverage the NBA and it’s players (including Kobe Bryant, Tim Duncan, Grant Hill and more), to increase Sprite soft drink sales. Her efforts led to successfully achieving double-digit growth and lasting brand awareness.
Her success included national marketing programs and advertising campaigns that led to making Sprite relevant across the country, including a Sprite/NBA initiative that was conducted at state fairs, reaching more than 13 million consumers, a backboard renovation program for community courts and an in-theater Sprite/NBA All-Star Balloting Program.
Ms. Vettor-Gray’s love for sports came from her family. Her Dad, an avid basketball fan, her Mom a loyal and forever Brooklyn Dodgers fan and her brother, a free lance TV sports producer. Her passion for sports led her to an early career as a gymnast, a volleyball player and a cheerleader.
At the time of this article, she was eagerly preparing for her next challenge: as VP Consumer Development for one of baseball’s most storied franchises, the Los Angeles Dodgers. In this position, she’s eager to help the Dodgers increase their market share and revenues. When asked about her competition she laughs, and refers instead to cultivating the Dodgers relationship with their fans so that Dodger baseball becomes part of their daily lives.
Ms. Vettor-Gray lives in Los Angeles with her husband, sportscaster Jim Gray.
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