Distinguished NYC sports executive takes helm of region’s premier women’s pro soccer club
HARRISON, NJ (Thursday, August 3, 2023) – After an extensive nationwide search, NJ/NY Gotham FC of the National Women’s Soccer League (NWSL) is pleased to announce the appointment of Mary Wittenberg as President, effective immediately.
As Gotham FC President, Wittenberg will leverage her experience to make the tri-state area the global capital of women’s soccer. Wittenberg will lead the business, collaborating with General Manager and Head of Soccer Operations Yael Averbuch West to establish an environment that inspires continued player success and makes Gotham FC a world-class club both on and off the field, inspiring Gotham FC fans everywhere.
“I am thrilled to join Gotham FC as President,” said Wittenberg. “It's a one-of-a-kind opportunity to build a world-renowned women's football club that inspires. Hats off to our owners, players, staff, and fans. I can't wait to start supporting this incredible community at this transformative time for the club and league, to serve our fans, and welcome vision-aligned brands that want to grow with us.”
With the support of Gotham FC owners, Wittenberg and Gotham FC’s bolstered front office with recently hired CFO, Chris Heider, and Nan Vogel’s continued leadership in business operations and partnerships, will continue cultivating meaningful corporate and community partnerships, entertaining, engaging, and attracting avid fans, and shaping a culture that reimagines the impact soccer can have in New York, New Jersey, and beyond. Wittenberg aims to make Gotham FC iconic in local communities and beloved worldwide.
“After carefully evaluating an extremely talented and diverse field of candidates, the ownership group is delighted to have attracted such a well-recognized leader in the sports industry,” said Gotham FC Chair Tammy Murphy. “Mary is an industry trailblazer. Her extensive experience, transformative mindset, and people-first leadership style reflect our club’s values of integrity, diversity, and inclusion.”
A graduate of Notre Dame Law School, Wittenberg is a long-time advocate for women’s sports and boasts an impressive track record of building brands, driving business growth, and implementing impactful organizational change. She was the first woman named President and CEO of New York Road Runners (NYRR) and became the first woman race director of the world’s major marathon, leading the TCS New York City Marathon. Under her leadership, NYRR transformed from a local running club to the premier community running organization, and the New York City marathon grew to be one of the largest in the world with more than 50,000 runners from 100-plus countries. Wittenberg has also served as the founding CEO of the innovative Virgin Sport, President of the Tour de France EF Pro Cycling team, and founding President, Pro of start-up league, League One Volleyball.
Gotham FC’s Club President search was assisted by General Sports Worldwide, a globally respected executive search and consulting firm that has assisted more than 80 sports organizations in the past year across the NFL, NBA, MLB, NHL, the English Premier League, and others.
ABOUT NJ/NY GOTHAM FC
Representing New Jersey and New York, Gotham FC plays its home matches in the National Women’s Soccer League at Red Bull Arena in Harrison, NJ. The club, which rebranded as Gotham FC in 2021, is the longest operating women’s professional soccer club in the United States and has been part of the NWSL since the league launched in 2013. The team won the inaugural Women’s Professional Soccer championship in 2009. Most recently, Gotham FC advanced to the 2021 Challenge Cup Final – the club’s first-ever championship appearance in NWSL competition. Gotham FC, currently in third place in the NWSL standings and second in its UKG Challenge group, is poised for a strong finish to the season as it seeks to make the playoffs for the second time in the last three years. Tickets can be purchased at GothamFC.com.
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