Michael Wall and Tracy Deforge join USA Team Handball’s board of directors; Melissa Zhang joins the organization as communications manager
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. – USA Team Handball today announced the additions of Michael Wall and Tracy Deforge to its board of directors as well as the hiring of Melissa Zhang as communications manager. Wall will also serve as chair of the board of directors.
"I am thrilled to have Michael and Tracy bring their vast experience to our board and leadership team. Their sports business acumen brings a whole new dimension to the organization,” said USA Team Handball CEO Barry Siff. “In order to meet our vision of making team handball ‘America’s Next Great Sport,’ we welcome our new communications manager, Melissa Zhang, with unbridled enthusiasm. The mission of exposing this internationally popular game to the United States will be Melissa’s main task, and given her experience with the U.S. Olympic & Paralympic Committee, we are confident that road will be well-paved.”
Wall brings more than 24 years of sports industry experience to USA Team Handball. He served as the chief legalofficer for the TD Garden and the Boston Bruins for 13 years, where he counseled the executive management teams of the sports and entertainment arena and the “Original Six” National Hockey League franchise on all legal aspects of their operations and business relationships.
“Handball is an exciting, fast-paced sport with plenty to offer the U.S. audience,” said Wall. “I look forward to helping USA Team Handball bring this sport to new heights in this country and integrating handball into mainstream American sports culture.”
Following his tenure with the TD Garden, Wall served as executive vice president, general counsel and corporate secretary for sports equipment and apparel manufacturer, Performance Sports Group, Ltd., and helped grow the organization from a single-sport, $200 million company to a multi-sport enterprise with revenues in excess of $600 million. He currently works for Foley & Lardner LLP’s as a member of its Sport & Entertainment Group and is a member of the Advisory Board of the Boston Bruins Foundation. Wall earned his bachelor’s degree from The College of the Holy Cross and obtained his law degree from Boston College Law School.
An attorney by training, Deforge brings a wealth of sports experience to USA Team Handball. For over a decade, she has focused on startup companies and sports and media technology offerings. Deforge worked in business development for the National Hockey League and Major League Baseball and co-founded The Players’ Impact, a venture platform for professional athletes. She also founded the Boston chapter of Women in Sports and Events (WISE), which represents the voices of women working in the sports industry. Deforge is passionate about mentorship, serving as an adjunct professor at Dean College, an advisor for the MIT Launch program and a board member for the Positive Coaching Alliance’s New England chapter.
As communications manager, Zhang will lead the coordination and implementation of marketing plans, website and social media development, and content management while serving as the lead public relations contact for USA Team Handball. Zhang comes to the organization from the communications department of the U.S. Olympic & Paralympic Committee, where she regularly generated press releases, feature stories and editorial content for the Team USA and U.S. Paralympics websites, covering both domestic and international sporting events and competitions. She earned her degree in psychology and political science at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), where she covered its Division I programs as a sports reporter and editor.
About USA Team Handball: USA Team Handball (USATH) is the U.S. National Governing Body for the Olympic discipline of Team Handball, and is responsible for the development of grassroots programs, preparation of national teams for international competition - including the Pan American and Olympic Games - as well as the day-to-day oversight of the sport of team handball in the United States. The mission of USATH is to develop, promote, educate and grow the sport of team handball at all levels domestically, and to enable U.S. athletes to achieve sustained competitive excellence to win medals in international and Olympic competition. USATH is a member of the International Handball Federation, the North American and Caribbean Handball Confederation and the United States Olympic & Paralympic Committee, and is headquartered in Colorado Springs, Colorado.
Media Contact: Melissa Zhang | (508) 768-5649 |