Ken Chin of Atlanta Sports Council Hired as New Executive Director of Denver Sports
September 17, 2013
Ken Chin has been hired as the first executive director of the newly aligned Metro Denver Sports Commission (MDSC; now Denver Sports), which is now part of VISIT DENVER, The Convention & Visitors Bureau.
Chin comes to Denver with nearly 20 years of experience in sports business marketing. Most recently, he served as vice president, business development and events, for the Atlanta Sports Council (ASC), the sports division of the Metro Atlanta Chamber. In that position, he was part of the senior team that launched the first Chick-fil-A Bowl Alma Mater, a made-for-television, celebrity-amateur golf event. He also played a leading event role with ESPN College GameDay’s first appearance at the inaugural Chick-fil-A Kickoff Game (Alabama vs. Clemson) in 2008. He oversaw production for the ASC’s Atlanta Sports Awards show from 2007-2013 and for the Naismith Awards hospitality events held in Atlanta during the 2013 NCAA Men’s Final Four.
In addition to his role overseeing ASC events, Chin started the business development arm of the ASC, leading the company’s efforts to grow its core business and bring new sports events to metro Atlanta. In this position, he helped transform ASC’s outreach from a downtown-centric sports commission to one more representative of the 29-county metro Atlanta region, paving the way for greater engagement with sports venues and creating more partnership opportunities with metro Atlanta and regional sports commissions. He created and developed the ASC’s event recruitment criteria and its strategic positioning as a Host City. He also oversaw the content for the majority of ASC bid submissions, and was responsible for engaging the ASC with the U.S. Olympic Committee (USOC), U.S. Paralympics, the NCAA and the Atlantic Coast Conference.
Chin got his start in sports business by working for the National Hockey League (NHL) in their New York City headquarters. He started as an intern, and eventually rose to be Vice President of the NHL’s Events & Entertainment Department. Here, he was part of the leadership team that evaluated and researched bid submissions for events such as the NHL All-Star Weekend and the Entry Draft. He served as Venue Director for the NHL’s 2004 World Cup of Hockey games played in Helsinki, Finland and Cologne, Germany. In total, Chin supervised or managed NHL events in more than 25 League markets and at five international hockey events in Europe and Japan.
A PERFECT MIX FOR DENVER SPORTS
“Ken Chin brings the perfect mix of experience in both managing major sports events, and in recruiting and creating these types of events for city destinations,” said Richard Scharf, president & CEO of VISIT DENVER. “We were particularly pleased with his experience in creating partnerships and outreach that involve an entire community in bringing major sporting events to the region,” Scharf said.
Denver Mayor Michael B. Hancock, a self professed sports fan, helped create the alignment between VISIT DENVER and the Metro Denver Sports Commission that resulted in Denver Sports. “Denver is one of the great sports cities of America. In Ken, we have a phenomenal individual to lead Denver Sports and help bring major new sporting events to our region,” Mayor Hancock said. “The city looks forward to working with Ken and the VISIT DENVER team on the future of Denver Metro sporting events. Together, the future is bright for stimulating the regional economy and strengthening our national and international recognition,” the Mayor said.
Ken Chin said he was delighted to be joining a successful team in The Mile High City. “Denver already has an outstanding reputation as Sports City U.S.A. and does an outstanding job hosting world-class sporting events. I look forward to working with Mayor Hancock, the Denver Sports Advisory Board and the VISIT DENVER team, to help elevate Denver’s sports image and bring even more world class sports events to this area,” Chin said.
Denver Sports was founded in 2001 to help bring high-profile sporting events to Denver. The organization is best known for its involvement with the 2008 NCAA Frozen Four, the 2012 Women's Final Four, and the Rocky Mountain Showdown football game that matches the University of Colorado against Colorado State University. For the past 12 years, the organization has also led the effort to position Denver for a possible Olympic bid. Several board members of Denver Sports also served on the Olympic Exploratory Committee formed last year by Mayor Hancock and Governor Hickenlooper.
VISIT DENVER is a non-profit trade association and has been the official marketing arm for the city since 1909 with the mission of marketing Denver as a convention and leisure destination. VISIT DENVER has a sports department that worked hand-in-hand with MDSC on recruiting major events such as the NCAA Men’s Final Four to Denver in 1990, The Olympic Festival in 1995 and the NBA, NHL and MLB All-Star games, as well as attracting other sports events to the city such as the annual Colorado Crossroads Volleyball Tournament.
In 2012, supporting Mayor Hancock’s leadership, the Board of Denver Sports voted to merge the efforts of their organization with VISIT DENVER to bring synergy and savings to the collective efforts of bringing sporting events to the region.
Ken Chin grew up in New Jersey and earned his B.S. and M.A. degrees from The Ohio State University. He later obtained his Sports and Special Event Marketing Certificate from New York University. While in Atlanta, he was named to the Georgia State University Cecil B. Day School of Hospitality Industry Advisory Board, and to the Board of Advisors for Desire Street Ministries. In his spare time, he and his wife Ellie enjoy playing golf, attending concerts and seeing Broadway musicals.
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About Denver Sports
Denver Sports was founded in 2001 to help bring high-profile sporting events to Denver. The organization is best known for its involvement with the 2008 NCAA Men's Frozen Four, the 2012 NCAA Women's Final Four and the annual Rocky Mountain Showdown football game that matches the University of Colorado Boulder against Colorado State University. For the past 11 years, the organization also led the effort to position Denver for a possible future Olympic Bid. In December 2012, Denver Sports merged themselves with VISIT DENVER's sports marketing efforts. More information can be found at VISITDENVER.com/DenverSports.