This summer, the SFIA will acknowledge five young professionals in the sports and fitness industry who have been selected as the 2017 SFIA Future Industry Leaders Scholarship recipients. All five recipients will be present at the fifth annual SFIA Industry Leaders Summit this September 13-14 in Chicago.
In the weeks leading up to the event, the SFIAinsider blog, in collaboration with SFIA Weekly, will be highlighting exclusive interviews with each of our five winners, in order of participant’s response. We are honored to have the opportunity to put them in the spotlight in the lead up to this prestigious networking event.
This week, we meet Michael Wright, a Community Partnerships Manager at Goodsports, Inc.
SFIAinsider: Why did you apply to the Future Industry Leaders Scholarship Program?
Michael Wright: I applied for this scholarship because I was interested in attended the Industry Leaders Summit and felt that this opportunity would provide me with the chance to network with a number of proven professionals in the sporting goods industry.
SFIAinsider: What made you want to work in the sports and fitness industry?
Michael Wright: Growing up I loved playing sports and being active, but I knew from an early age that I was not going to make it as a professional athlete. My drive to still somehow be involved in athletics lead me to working as a student equipment manager throughout my time in college. In that role, I became very familiar with how the back-end of athletics work, which in turn heightened my interest in the industry.
SFIAinsider: What exactly do you do in your current position?
Michael Wright: Good Sports is a non-profit organization that gives all kids the lifelong benefits of sport and physical activity by providing new equipment, apparel and footwear to those most in need. As the Community Partnerships Manager, my role focuses on overseeing our equipment distribution process, ensuring that we are maximizing our impact on children in the community, while also building relationships in the sporting goods industry to source additional donations of excess equipment that companies may have.
SFIAinsider: What do you find the most enjoyable part of your work?
Michael Wright: The most enjoyable part of my job is seeing the positive impact that our donations have on the community, and sharing that impact with the sporting goods manufacturers that have provided us with equipment.
SFIAinsider: What are you most looking forward to at this year’s Industry Leaders Summit?
Michael Wright: I am looking forward to networking with so many established professionals in the sporting goods industry, and hopefully building longstanding relationships with this group.
SFIAinsider: What is your favorite sports memory from your lifetime?
Michael Wright: I grew up in a small town in the Northwest Corner of Connecticut. My graduating class in high school had only 77 kids, however in very Hoosier-esque style, my basketball team made the state finals during my senior year. While on that postseason run, I was very much a role player on that team and did not see the court much, but in my first ever state playoff game I had a double-double while leading my team to the second round.
SFIAinsider: Do you have a favorite sports movie?
Michael Wright: Rudy. No matter how many times I watch that movie, it never gets old.