WNBA hires Jay Parry as chief operating officer

Apr 11, 2016 - 2:52 PM NEW YORK (AP) Jay Parry was hired as the WNBA's chief operating officer Monday after spending seven seasons as president of the Phoenix Mercury.

Parry will lead all team and league efforts to generate revenue. Her new job begins May 2, leading to the start of the league's 20th season May 14.

''I am really excited about the 20th anniversary, all the momentum that I believe is behind the WNBA,'' Parry said in a phone interview. ''I think the time is right to take it to the next level, really be a part of something exciting for women's basketball. The women's platform in general.''

At the Mercury, where she was also COO, Parry was instrumental in helping the WNBA club secure the league's first marquee jersey partnership.

''Our players are running up and down the court during every game, 34 games for each team for 12 teams throughout the season,'' WNBA President Lisa Borders said. ''They are paragons of health. ... There is no better advertisement for a brand than to have the caliber of athletes we have.''

Parry has seen the league grow since joining the Mercury in 2004.

''Our biggest challenge is the biggest opportunity, growing the league, growing the fan base,'' Parry said. ''On the court the game has never been better. That's the foundation of our league. The best players, playing at the highest level, that's changed dramatically over the past 20 years.''

Parry also spent time with the Phoenix Suns in 2010 before serving as the president and CEO of the Arizona Super Bowl host committee.

''I haven't had the privilege of working her directly, but talking with her many times through this process, meeting with her, we complete one and another's sentences,'' Borders said. ''There is a very clear alignment for our love for the league, passion for ensuring the league is sustainable and profitable over time. This is Jay's sweet spot. She's got a proven and dedicated track record.''

No one has shouted yet.
Be the first!