NWSL names Jessica Berman commissioner after five-month search

Jessica Berman was appointed as NWSL Commissioner on Wednesday after searching for the next leader in the league for nearly five months. She joined NWSL from the National Lacrosse League and was Vice Commissioner and Executive Vice President of Business.

“I am honored to be the next Commissioner of NWSL and I am grateful that the owners have trusted me,” Berman said. “Working for and working with our players is my number one priority. Having been involved in professional sports for many years, a true partnership with players is a successful and growing experience for all of us. I know how important it is to keep going. “

Prior to joining the NLL, Berman spent 13 years at the NHL, first serving as Vice President and Deputy Legal Advisor, then Vice President of Community Development, Culture and Growth, and Managing Director of the NHL Foundation.

Berman will begin his four-year term as Commissioner on April 20th. Marlameshing will serve as Interim CEO until May 31st.Meshing Taken over the role In October 2021 after then commissioner Lisa Baird resigned following extensive calculations. Abuse of power.. The league’s board has also expelled general counsel Lisa Levine.

In the wake of an athletic report Details of sexual coercion accusations Players around the league criticized the NWSL’s reaction to former courage coach Paul Riley. During the fallout, the NWSL Players Association demanded that players take on the role of hiring the league’s next commissioner.

Members of the Players Commissioner Search Committee included Crystal Dunn, Kaylie Collins, Jane Campbell, Brianna Visalli, Nicole Barnhart, Emily Menges, Tori Huster, and NWSLPA Executive Director Meghann Burke. The search committee also included the board and the company James & Co.

“We are excited to see Jessica embark on her tenth season of play as NWSL’s next commissioner,” said Sophie Sovereign, a member of OL Reign’s board of directors. “This process was very supportive throughout. I would like to thank the players for their involvement. Jessica’s broad professional background, her commitment to raising a diverse voice in the sports industry, and our league. Her vision for the future made her fit into this incredibly important position. “

Berman will be hired one month after NWSLPA. Ratification of the league’s first CBA.. This contract, which includes a league minimum wage, group license rights, and a 160% increase in benefits and guarantees for other players, is valid for five years.

“The successful conclusion of the league’s first CBA with our players is the perfect foundation for building that partnership,” Berman said. “And I am grateful for Mara Messing’s leadership in achieving that.”

Birman Told to “CBS Mornings” On Wednesday her priority is to build strong partnerships with the players.

“My background is that I’m a labor lawyer, so I firmly believe in our partnership with our union,” she said. “I want to say that it’s a marriage you can’t divorce and we have to work together. That’s my priority.”

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