Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Sports Franchise Owners to Honor Athletic Excellence

At the Sneaker Soiree, Buccaneers Co-Chairman Bryan Glazer will participate in a roundtable discussion with Lightning Owner Jeff Vinik and Rays Principal Owner Stuart Sternberg


On June 2, some of the most influential men and women in the arena of Tampa Bay sports will gather to recognize outstanding achievement in the field.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers Co-Chairman Bryan Glazer, Tampa Bay Lightning Owner Jeff Vinik and Tampa Bay Rays Principal Owner Stuart Sternberg will join the Tampa Bay Sports Commission (TBSC) as it hosts the inaugural "Tampa Bay Sneaker Soiree: A Celebration of Excellence in Sports Business."

Rob Higgins, executive director of the Tampa Bay Sports Commission, is thrilled by the slate of guests and nominees expected to be in attendance.

"We are excited to bring so many elite-level sports organizations and individuals together to recognize the positive impact that this industry has on the Tampa Bay community," he said.

The event will be held at TPepin's Hospitality Centre and will honor the off-the-field business accomplishments of each of the area's local sports organizations in a variety of categories, ranging from best web site to executive of the year.  The evening will also include a pre-function VIP party and a special owners' roundtable discussion with the three franchise owners. 

The Sneaker Soiree will recognize and award organizations, individuals, athletes, facilities and campaigns that have demonstrated excellence in sports business practices throughout the Bay area community. Linebacker Adam Hayward, center Jeff Faine and General Manager Mark Dominik are some of the Buccaneers who have been nominated for awards.

"Our family and the Buccaneers recognize the importance of the Sports Commission and their impact on our area's youth initiatives," said Bryan Glazer, Co-Chairman of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.  "We couldn't be more thrilled to be working with the Commission to foster the ongoing social and economic development of our community."

The Sneaker Soiree will also serve as a major fundraiser for the Tampa Bay Sports Commission.  The nonprofit organization works diligently to impact the Tampa Bay area both socially and economically through sports and seeks to attract, promote and organize major amateur sporting events and grassroots youth sports programs. 

"It's an honor to be a part of this inaugural event and help support the area's sports industry and the Tampa Bay Sports Commission," said Jeff Vinik, owner of the Tampa Bay Lightning.  "As the leader for youth and amateur sports in Tampa Bay, the Sports Commission's work leaves a lasting impact on our community, not to mention the St. Pete Times Forum and our franchise."   

The awards presentation will be televised on Bright House Sports Network and will air live on the radio on Clear Channel's 620AM WDAE. 

"The Rays organization and the Tampa Bay Sports Commission share an unwavering commitment to our region's youth," said Stuart Sternberg, principal owner of the Tampa Bay Rays.  "We are excited to be a part of this inaugural event that will enhance youth and amateur sports programs and provide resources for many of these athletes to further their educations."

Legendary basketball personality Dick Vitale will also be honored with the first ever "Lifetime Achievement Award" presented by Tampa Bay & Company for his significant impact on the area through his efforts in sports.  College football television analyst Jesse Palmer will serve as the Master of Ceremonies.

The VIP Reception begins at 6 p.m. and the event program begins at 7 p.m.  Individual tickets are $100, and table and sponsorship opportunities are available.

The Sneaker Soiree is the start to a month-long series of events in Tampa Bay highlighting the area's passion for sports.  On June 6, the Tampa Bay Sports Commission will host its annual Golf Tournament, followed by the CONCACAF Gold Cup on June 11, and the TBSC Annual Sports Partners Meeting on June 29. 

For more information about the inaugural Tampa Bay Sneaker Soiree, please call 813.342.4075 or visit www.TampaBaySports.org.

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