LSU Sports Media Summit Brings Big Names, National Attention, to Baton Rouge

The LSU Manship School of Mass Communication will host the inaugural Sports Communication Summit Wednesday featuring sports and media personalities from across the country, including representatives from SSG Sports, a sports strategy firm with offices in Baton Rouge.

“We couldn’t be more excited to be a part of this summit,” said Denise Michaels, Chief of Sports Strategy at SSG Sports, who will moderate the lead-off panel Curve Balls for Front Office Managers. “We expect participants – particularly the students – will benefit from the glimpse behind the professional curtain.   It’s a rare and valuable opportunity to access leading industry decision-makers and get some insight into what really goes on in the day-to-day of any sports team or league.”

The Summit, hosted by the Reilly Center for Media & Public Affairs, will feature athletes, agents, executives and reporters from across the country with NCAA President Mark Emmert and Fox Sports announcer Tim Brando delivering the keynote addresses. Panelists will discuss topics such as social media, women in sports journalism and careers in sports and will feature lively discussion and Q&A from the audience. The event is free and open to the public.

SSG Sports, a division of Sanderson Strategies Group in Washington DC, has represented the Office of the Commissioner of Major League Baseball for 25 years. The firm has also worked with 22 of the 30 teams in the majors, as well as NBA teams, NFL Teams, collegiate programs, individual athletes and numerous executives and ownership groups across the country. Michaels, who spent seven years in the public relations department of MLB and the last 17 as an executive at SSG, leads SSG’s sports division, working closely with team, league and player clients.

“This event is a great way for the LSU and Baton Rouge community to capitalize on the electricity of the ‘Bama’ game and bring even more eyes to what we are doing here in the sports media and business world,” said Robert Munson, SSG Sports Senior Adviser and Executive Director of Sports Operations. “We are particularly excited to see the involvement of Baton Rouge Area Sports Foundation Vice President Eric Engemann, New Orleans Sports Foundation President Jay Cicero and Eddie Davis of Major League Baseball’s Urban Youth Academy in New Orleans. These are the people who are really making things happen on the ground every day in Louisiana.”

The SSG Sports team, including firm founder and Manship School board member, Len Sanderson, will be available after the event during a reception for students to discuss careers and opportunities with the panelists. Along with Emmert and Brando, others involved include former pro athletes Ben McDonald and Ryan Theriot, sports agent Erik Burkhardt and the commissioner of National Pro Fastpitch Cheri Kempf.

The Sports Communication Summit will begin at 8am, November 2nd, at the Holliday Forum in the Journalism building at the LSU Manship School of Mass Communication. More Information, including a full schedule of events, can be found at

Contact information:

Denise Michaels, SSG Sports

Robert Munson, SSG Sports