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Charlie Huebner, USOPF Vice President, Paralympic Development
Power of Being Bold

Charlie Huebner was named vice president of Paralympic development for the U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Foundation (USOPF) in August 2014 after leading the strategy to integrate Paralympic programs into USOPC Divisions as chief of Paralympics since July 2006. 

He joined the USOPC in 2001 as the director of the newly founded U.S. Paralympics division. In his current role, he collaborates with the USOPF Board and Senior management, to cultivate national leaders to advise and support the building of the USOPC philanthropic brand.  

Huebner has led initiatives in collaboration with USOPC leaders to enhance programs, resources and awareness of Paralympic sport.  Results include:  An increase in annual budget from $1.8M to more than $24.0M; in partnership with Communications, Development, Marketing and Government Affairs, secured more than $75.0M in new revenue; and increased Paralympic public awareness in the U.S. by 82%.

He led the creation, recruitment and implementation of the USOPC Board-appointed Paralympic Advisory Committee, which provides strategic advice on Paralympic initiatives.

Huebner is very active in volunteer community service projects. He currently serves on the board of directors of The Christopher Ames Matthews Project, Pennies for Nicoll, and Homeward Pikes Peak, and is co-founder of the Colorado Springs YOT Club, which is a cost-effective black-tie event that collects toys for underprivileged children.

In 1996, Huebner was one of 41 Americans to be named a Jefferson Award winner for community service.  In 2014, Huebner was awarded with the Department of Defense Medal for Distinguished Public Service.  It is the highest honor that a civilian can receive from the U.S. Secretary of Defense.

 

Kevin Penn, USOPC Chief, Business Operations 
USOPC Breakdown

Kevin Penn was named chief of business operations for the United States Olympic & Paralympic Committee in June 2016. In his role, Penn is responsible for introducing new standards of performance while driving efficiencies and providing direct oversight for USOPC corporate divisions, including audit, business intelligence, facilities, finance, information technology, security and strategic planning.

Penn joined the USOPC after 19 years at Highwoods Properties, a publicly traded real estate investment trust headquartered in Raleigh, North Carolina, where he served as senior vice president of strategy and administration. At Highwoods, he managed the company’s strategic plan, which incorporated performance management, investment strategy, portfolio planning, organizational development and business planning functions. He was active in the company’s acquisitions and new business initiatives and led several of the corporate services departments supporting the organization.

Prior to his experience at Highwoods, Penn worked at Genentech, a leading biotechnology firm, and CSC Index, a management consulting firm in San Francisco.

Penn has also been active civically as the immediate past chair of both the Triangle District Council of the Urban Land Institute and the North Carolina Leukemia & Lymphoma Society.

Penn received his bachelor’s degree in English from Boston University and an MBA from the Fuqua School of Business at Duke University. He resides in Colorado Springs with his wife and two children.

Originally from New England, she received a bachelor’s degree in physical education and sport studies from the University of New Hampshire.

 

Julie Miller, USOPC Associate High Performance Director, Sport Performance Team IV
Pathway to the Podium with Sport Performance

Julie Miller is a nine-year veteran of the USOPC and is the Associate High Performance Director for Sport Performance Team IV. Miller will also be serving as the Village Director for Team USA at the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo, Japan.

Miller works closely with track and field, swimming, equestrian, shooting, weightlifting, sport climbing and golf and has attended seven Olympic Games in her lifetime. Prior to her tenure with Sport Performance, Miller worked in the High Performance Division at U.S. Figure Skating and was a USOPC OPTC Operations intern. She graduated from the University of Minnesota with a master’s in applied kinesiology/health and physical education and a bachelor’s in kinesiology with a minor in coaching.

 

Davis Tutt, Coordinator, NGB Services
What is a National Governing Body? - Panelist

Davis Tutt works for the United States Olympic and Paralympic Committee as the Coordinator in the National Governing Body (NGB) Services Department. In this position, he is responsible for organizing the National Governing Body Council, an association of all NGB Executive Directors and Board Chairs who serve as a recommending body for the USOPC. Davis also assists with the development and implementation of strategic plans for each NGB as well as the NGB Services special grants program. Additionally, Davis oversees the NGB Best Practice Seminars, which provide NGB leaders a forum to share ideas and gain valuable insight from fellow members of the Olympic movement. 

Prior to the USOC, Davis worked as a Program Associate for the El Pomar Foundation Fellowship. He was fully responsible for managing the Summer Internship Program, which included recruiting, selecting, and overseeing ten college students for the duration of the summer. Davis furthered El Pomar’s impact in rural Colorado as director of the Central Peaks and Pikes Peak Regions. He directed many other El Pomar programs, including the Forum for Civic Advancement, the Wildland Fire Fund, the El Pomar-Denver Broncos Partnership, and taught Investment Challenge, a principles of financial management class.

Davis graduated from Colorado College with a degree in Art History and received the award for Top Senior Thesis of 2015 for his research on St. Paul’s Cathedral. He was the recipient of a Keller Venture Grant, which allowed primary research on site in London at the Cathedral as well as the Royal Society. Outside of academics, Davis interned for the United States Senate, The United States Olympic Committee, and the Colorado Springs Fine Arts Center.

Outside of his professional pursuits, Davis is a member of the Fountain Valley School of Colorado Board of Trustees, the Colorado Springs Youth Sports Board of Directors, the Colorado Springs Pioneers Museum Board of Directors, and the Colorado Springs Fine Arts Center at Colorado College Museum Subcommittee, the AAM accredited committee responsible for overseeing museum operations and the collection. He also maintains a presence in the community as the Communications Director of Hillside Connections, a weekly basketball camp and mentorship program for low-income children on the southeast side of Colorado Springs.

 

Brandon Dyett, USA Fencing Manager, Sports Performance
What is a National Governing Body? - Panelist

Brandon is a graduate of Colorado State University where he received his bachelor’s degree in journalism.  Upon graduating CSU, he worked in recreation management while pursuing his Master’s degree in sport administration.  Brandon has been a part of the Olympic movement since 2011 where he has worked in events, marketing/communications and in high performance with USA Boxing, USA Volleyball and USA Fencing.  Brandon has also taught sport admin undergrad courses for Metro State University – Denver and for Grand Canyon University.

 

Shane Garman, USA Cycling General Counsel
What is a National Governing Body? - Panelist

Shane joined USA Cycling in 2014 as Staff Attorney, before moving into his next position as Legal Counsel in 2016. He moved into his current role as General Counsel in 2019.  Shane is responsible for advising USA Cycling on all legal matters including, governance, contracts, intellectual property, insurance/risk management, disciplinary issues and dispute resolution, as well as managing litigation and overseeing USA Cycling’s SafeSport Program.

Garman is on the Board of Directors for Advance Colorado Fund, a Colorado nonprofit corporation that produces the Bailey Hundo, a 100-mile mountain bike fundraising race supporting the Colorado Mountain Bike Association, Colorado High School Cycling League and Trips for Kids Denver Metro.

Shane received a Bachelor of Science degree in Kinesiology from the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign in 2000, and a Juris Doctor from the University of Denver Sturm College of Law in 2007. Shane is an avid cyclist and a regular cyclocross and mountain bike racer.  He and his wife, Jodi, live in Lone Tree, Colorado with their cat Jack.

 

Erin Popovich, U.S. Paralympics Swimming Associate Director, Sport Operations
What is a National Governing Body? - Panelist

Erin Popovich has worked for the USOPC for 8 years in the Sport Performance, Paralympic Division.  She currently serves as the Associate Director for U.S. Paralympics Swimming Sport Operations.

Popovich competed in her first Paralympic Games in 2000, winning six medals (three gold, three silver) and breaking four world records in swimming. Her success proved to be a precursor to her breathtaking performance in Athens, where she won seven gold medals and set three world records and four Paralympic Games records.

Popovich completed her Paralympic swimming career with a bang, winning five silver medals at the IPC Swimming World Championships in Eindhoven, Netherlands. 

 

Sarah Wilhelmi, USOPC Director, Collegiate Partnerships
Olympians & Paralympians Made Here

Sarah Wilhelmi serves as the Director of Collegiate Partnerships for the United States Olympic & Paralympic Committee and assumed the position in June 2016. Wilhelmi oversees initiatives and strategies related to USOC collaboration within the collegiate landscape and is charges with supporting and aligning mutual interests among core stakeholders including, but not limited, to National Governing Bodies, NCAA, higher education (e.g., institutions, conferences, coaching associations). Wilhelmi is developing and executing strategies aimed at supporting student-athletes, advocating for Olympic sports, and enhancing collegiate contributions to Team USA.

Wilhelmi was formally the Associate Commissioner for Governance and Institutional Services/SWA at the West coast Conference (WCC). In this role, she managed the 2014-17 Strategic Plan, governance structure, legislative process, compliance, academics, and student services. Wilhelmi was the sport administrator for women’s basketball and cross country and staff liaison to various executive level cabinets and administrative groups.

Prior to the WCC, Wilhelmi served as the Assistant Director of Compliance Services at Stanford University and handled interpretations, investigations, eligibility, and amateurism. Wilhelmi was also a NCAA Membership Services intern supporting interpretations, waivers, and the Olympic Sports Liaison Committee and the Student-Athlete Well-Being Task Force and an International Games intern for the United States Olympic & Paralympic Committee. Wilhelmi started as a Student Services Administrative Assistant at her alma mater, the University of Iowa, which is where she received her Bachelor’s in business administration and earned a Master’s in health and sport studies. Sarah and her husband Chris reside in Colorado with their two daughters, Audrey and Lucille Wilhelmi.

 

Dean Nakamura, USOPC Vice President, Games Operations
Process of the Games - Moderator

Dean Nakamura was named the vice president of games operations for the United States Olympic & Paralympic Committee in June 2017. He joined the organization in 2005 as manager of Paralympic sport programs and has since held titles including associate director of Paralympic outreach and development, and director of Paralympic international games. 

In his current role, Nakamura oversees the administration and operation of Team USA at eight different Games throughout the Olympic cycle, including the Olympics and Paralympics. Working closely with sport performance and logistics, games operations is charged with creating and maintaining relationships with Organizing Committees and identifying necessary resources for Team USA in order to provide an optimal competition environment for Team USA athletes. 

Prior to the USOPC, Nakamura spent five years at USA Field Hockey. As director of sport development, he worked with communities throughout the country to grow the game of field hockey. As assistant director of national teams, Nakamura managed the selection, logistics, camps and competitions for the men’s team. 

Nakamura began his career in Olympic sport as a goaltender for the U.S. Men’s National Field Hockey Team and resident athlete at the Chula Vista Olympic Training Center (now the Chula Vista Elite Athlete Training Center). While on the national team, Nakamura also coached women’s field hockey at both Brown University and the University of California, Berkeley. He served as the athlete representative on the youth development committee for USA Field Hockey prior to retiring from the squad. 

Raised in Camarillo, California, Nakamura now lives with his wife in Colorado Springs, Colorado. 

 

Chelsy Hodge, USOPP Manager, Strategic Events and Protocol
Process of the Games - Panelist

Chelsy Hodge is a Manager in Strategic Events and Protocol for the US Olympic and Paralympic Properties, the joint venture between LA 2028 and the US Olympic Committee. In her current role, she manages all sponsor hospitality events and programming to include, but limited to USA House, Fantasy Days, Team USA Awards, Next Olympic Hopeful, etc.

Previously, Chelsy worked for the United States Olympic Committee (USOC) as a coordinator in their Meeting and Event Services department where she served as an event and operational resource for internal meetings, special events and hospitality programs, and for the Olympic and Paralympic Sponsor programming. Events included, but not limited to: Olympic and Paralympic Games, U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Assembly, Fantasy Days, NGB and Partner Workshops, White House Visit, International Relations Meetings, Awards Banquets, etc. 

Internationally, Chelsy has worked alongside Team USA at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games and the PyeongChang 2018 Olympic winter games, executing USA House, the USOC’s hospitality center for athletes and their families, sponsors, donors, Board of Director’s and more. 
Being a Colorado native she graduated from the University of Colorado with her Bachelor of Science in Business. 

 

Danielle Lopez, USOPC Sr. Consultant, Business Strategy & Operations
Process of the Games - Panelist

Danielle Lopez is a senior consultant in the USOPC’s Strategy and Business Consulting team. Her team provides project management, strategic planning and analytical expertise to support the success of divisional and organizational objectives.  Prior to her consulting role, Danielle served as the accreditation, registration and sport entry lead for the Games Operations team through the 2015 Pan American, 2016 Winter Youth Olympic, 2016 Summer Olympic and 2018 Winter Olympic Games. Most recently she has served in a variety of operational roles at the 2018 Youth Olympic Games, the 2019 Pan American games and the 2019 ANOC World Beach Games.

Lopez joined the USOPC in 2015 after 3 years in Major League Baseball where she supported the logistics and operations of the 2012 World Baseball Classic for 1.5 years and later joined the Business Affairs office at the Major League Baseball Players Association (MLBPA) as a licensing manager.  

Athletically, Lopez was a member of the 2011 Canadian National Softball Team where she competed and won a silver medal in the 2011 Pan American Games in Guadalajara, Mexico.  Upon hanging up her cleats after 11 years of playing and 6 years of coaching, Lopez briefly served as the Softball Canada athlete rep and an executive board member of AthletesCAN (athlete representative body of Canada).

Born in raised in Boston, Danielle received her bachelor’s degree in Biopsychology and Biomedical Engineering from Tufts University and a MS in Sport Management from the Isenberg School of Management at UMass Amherst.

 

AJ Turkovich, USOPP Manager, Consumer Products
Process of the Games - Panelist

A.J. Turkovich has over 10 years of experience in the sports industry and has worked for the United States Olympic & Paralympic Committee (USOPC) since 2011.  In his current role, he is responsible for managing the USOPC relationship with outfitting sponsors such as Nike, Ralph Lauren and Oakley, and is also the Director of a key Games function, Team USA Welcome Experience.   

Previously, A.J. served as a Manager of Event Services, where he planned over 50 events for the USOPC, including the Road to London and Road to Sochi events in Time Square, athlete visits to the White House, and the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony. 

Internationally, A.J. has worked alongside Team USA at the London 2012 Olympics Games and the Sochi 2014 Olympic Winter Games, managing the USOPC’s hospitality program.  He has also served as the Director of Team USA Welcome Experience at the Toronto 2015 Pan American Games, the Rio 2016 Olympic and Paralympic Games, and just finished Team USA Welcome Experience at the 2018 Winter Olympic and Paralympic Games in PyeongChang, South Korea.  

He got his start in the industry in 2007, when he interned for Disney’s Wide World of Sports in Orlando, FL, managing events for a variety of youth, collegiate, and professional sport organizations.  In 2009, A.J. interned at the Petersen Events Center in Pittsburgh, PA, where he assisted with the management of all University of Pittsburgh men’s and women’s basketball games and various concerts and conferences.  

A Pittsburgh native, A.J. graduated from Slippery Rock University of Pennsylvania with a B.S. in Sport Management in 2007.   He recently was selected as the sole USA participant for the IOC sponsored “MEMOS” program where he received his Executive Masters in Sport Organizations Management from the Université catholique de Louvain in Belgium.

 

Katie Bynum, USOPC Chief of Staff
Preparation for the Games on Home Soil

Katie Bynum has served as the chief of staff for the United States Olympic & Paralympic Committee since April 2019. In her role, Bynum works closely with CEO Sarah Hirshland to support the strategic priorities of the USOPC, oversees international relations and manages the organization’s relationship with LA 2028 and the United States Olympic and Paralympic Properties, the joint venture between the USOPC and LA 2028 that is charged with generating revenue for the Olympic and Paralympic Games Los Angeles 2028.

Prior to the USOPC, Bynum served as the managing director of partnership and championships experiences for the United States Golf Association. Bynum oversaw and developed key strategic partnerships and integrated programs to strengthen the USGA’s global reach and reputation in support of its mission. Bynum previously served as senior manager of global consulting at Wasserman, where she was instrumental in the opening of the agency’s first international consulting office based out of London.

Bynum is a graduate of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where she earned a bachelor’s degree in journalism and mass communication. Sports Business Journal named Bynum to its list of Leading Women in Sport Game Changers in 2017.

 

Cole McKeel, USOPC Manager, Sport Business Development
Emcee

Cole McKeel is the manager of Olympic & Paralympic Training Center sport business development for the United State Olympic & Paralympic Committee. In this position, McKeel is in charge of generating outside revenue for the Olympic & Paralympic Training Center’s in Colorado Springs, Colo. and Lake Placid, N.Y.

He also serves as vice president of GoEmpire Group, a professional basketball athlete representation firm in Chicago.

Prior to his current role with the USOPC, McKeel worked as the marketing and media assistant and diversity and inclusion champion for USA Bobsled & Skeleton. In this role, McKeel was responsible for the company’s partnerships with BMW and Under Armour. He also developed all content for the organization’s website, usabs.com, as well as the USABS social media platforms. In addition, McKeel launched the USABS mobile application.

McKeel was the head manager for the basketball team at the University of Louisville, where he graduated with honors with a bachelor degree in sport administration and minors in business administration, finance and marketing. Upon graduation, McKeel furthered his education at UofL, earning a Master of Business Administration with a concentration in finance.