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Micky Lawler  

President of the Women's Tennis Association

The WTA and Octagon, global leader in sports and entertainment management and marketing, have jointly announced the appointment of Micky Lawler as President of the WTA. One of the most respected senior executives in professional tennis and sport with close to 30 years of experience at Octagon, Lawler will report to WTA Chairman & CEO Stacey Allaster and be responsible for driving the WTA's international growth strategy, business development, marketing and new fan engagement programs, and member and industry relations. Lawler will begin in her new role on January 1, 2015 and be based out of the WTA's global headquarters in St. Petersburg, Florida.

"Micky Lawler has been at the center of the growth of professional tennis for nearly three decades, driving innovation and business across athlete representation, events, international expansion, governance and sponsorship," Allaster said. "In her 11 years as a WTA Board Member and 27 years as a leader of tennis at Octagon, she has been instrumental in shaping and contributing to our strategy for growth, importantly including opening new markets for the sport. As we embark on a new strategic business plan to support our members' business and increase our fan base, I cannot think of a better executive to join our senior leadership team."

"I am honored to have the opportunity to work even more closely with Stacey and her team at the WTA at this fantastic moment for women's professional tennis," Lawler said. "The sport has reached new levels of popularity, social and digital interconnectivity, and globalization, while the next generation of exciting champions is now emerging alongside the game's current iconic superstars. I am excited to help lead women's tennis to even greater success through continued international growth, enhancement of the fan experience across multimedia channels and in-stadium, and the development of new products and assets to support the business of women's tennis. As this evolution in my professional career is set to begin, I want to thank Phil de Picciotto and all of my friends and colleagues at Octagon, who have given me so much both personally and professionally for the past many years and who continue to do so. Their ongoing support was an essential consideration in my decision to accept this position."

"Micky's longstanding leadership role on WTA matters for both Octagon and the broader constituency she serves on the WTA Board has resulted in many valuable contributions to the growth of the business," de Picciotto, Founder and President of Octagon, said. "In the complex global landscape of professional tennis, Micky's fairness, commitment to collaboration, ability to find creative solutions, spirit of innovation and unwavering passion for her clients and colleagues suit her ideally for this role. The opportunity to serve as President of the WTA is a testament to her talent and personal qualities. As a major stakeholder in the game, Octagon relies on and benefits from a strong and well managed WTA. We consider today's appointment very important for the continued growth of Octagon, the WTA and the sport of women's tennis."

Lawler brings close to three decades of sports and entertainment expertise to the role, during which time she played an important role in expanding the geographic footprint of women's tennis, including the development of important initiatives in China. She has driven growth in all aspects of the tennis business across athletes, events, sponsorship sales and consultancy. In addition, she has provided strong strategic leadership during her 11 years as a WTA Board member, a role to which she dedicated an enormous amount of time in recent years. Prior to joining Octagon, Lawler began her sports career in communications at the Men's International Professional Tennis Council, the predecessor to the ATP World Tour.

Born in Holland, Lawler earned a BA in Political Science from The American University of Paris and Masters in Applied Linguistics from the University of Delaware. She was named a "Game Changer: Women in Sports Business" by the Sports Business Journal in 2012, recognized by the Washington Business Journal as one of their "Women Who Mean Business" honorees in 2009 and recipient of the Warsaw-Thurston Award by the University of Oregon College of Business in 2012. Having lived in nine different countries across South America, Central America, Europe, Africa and the United States, Lawler is fluent in Dutch, Spanish, French, German and English. She is the mother of three children, Charlotte, Trevor and Juliette.

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