Sport & Entertainment Panel
This event starts on June 12th at 6:00 PM.
The Sport & Entertainment Panel will bring together top executives and like-minded professionals from the Sport and Entertainment industries.
The evening kicks off with dinner, drinks, and networking, where you’ll find fresh faces and reconnect with some familiar ones. Afterward, you will take a seat at a dinner table for a 1 hour panel on our mainstage where top industry professionals will have a discussion on the ins and outs of working in entertainment.
Ari Ackerman is a successful serial entrepreneur and proud philanthropist. Ari’s role in his business ventures include strategic development, growth, and overall management. His entrepreneurial history includes being the Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Bunk1.com, the enormously popular technology company that allows parents to see pictures, and send emails/Bunk Notes to kids at summer camp. Two years ago, he had a successful sale and exit of Bunk1 to a private equity firm. Prior to Bunk1, his career has included product management with Procter & Gamble and the marketing department of Cendant Corporation. Additionally, he worked for 4 years on Capitol Hill for a member of Congress and on the Banking and Financial Services Committee. Ari has been fortunate enough to have been featured in dozens of media outlets including CNN, the Today Show, the New York Times, and Wall Street Journal.
Ari grew up in New York City and received his undergraduate degree from Duke University and an MBA with honors from Northwestern University (Kellogg). His philanthropic endeavors included serving on multiple boards such as the JCRC, AIPAC, UJA. In addition, he has hosted dozens of leading political figures in his home including John McCain and Michael Bloomberg. One of his latest entrepreneurial ventures is Tribe, a unique dating app that facilitates meaningful connections for Jewish singles. Most importantly for Baseball and sports fans, he is also recently a partner in the Derek Jeter led group that purchased the Miami Marlins.
As President of Global Content & Media Distribution, Bill Koenig is responsible for the domestic and international media businesses for the NBA, WNBA, NBA G League and USA Basketball. In this role, Koenig develops strategies for dealing with the rapidly changing media landscape, structures and negotiates broadcast, digital and social media agreements, and advises NBA teams on local media matters. Koenig also helps manage the NBA’s relationships with the league’s major media partners around the globe, such as ABC/ESPN, Turner, 21st Century Fox, Comcast, AT&T/DirecTV, Verizon, Tencent and a number of digital and social media partners. Additionally, Koenig oversees the NBA’s content development, production and licensing activities and the league’s direct-to-consumer content offerings (including NBA TV, NBA LEAGUE PASS and the NBA’s applications and websites).
Prior to his current role, Koenig was NBA Executive Vice President, Business Affairs and General Counsel, where he was the head of business affairs and responsible for all legal work across a variety of league businesses, including digital, television, media, sponsorship and licensing. In that role, Koenig helped negotiate virtually every major commercial agreement for the NBA, developed and oversaw the league’s media policies, and was instrumental in many NBA accomplishments, including the launch and growth of NBA TV and the WNBA, the NBA’s partnership with Turner to jointly manage NBA Digital’s assets, and the creation of NBA China. Koenig joined the NBA in 1990 and served as the NBA’s Assistant General Counsel before becoming General Counsel of NBA Entertainment in 1993.
Koenig serves on the Board of the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame and the T. Howard Foundation. Prior to joining the NBA, Koenig was associated with the law firm of Proskauer Rose Goetz and Mendelsohn, where he was a litigator who concentrated on professional sports and antitrust matters.
Koenig graduated with honors from Harvard University, the London School of Economics and the University of Pennsylvania School of Law, where he served as an editor of the Law Review.
Koenig is a native of Hollywood, Fla., and resides in Scarsdale, N.Y.
Peter Nelson is executive vice president, HBO Sports, for Home Box Office. He is responsible for overseeing the strategic direction, programming and operations of the HBO Sports department, including its boxing franchise and HBO Pay-Per-View®. In addition, the HBO Sports portfolio includes the Peabody- and Emmy Award®-winning journalism program Real Sports with Bryant Gumbel, the nine-time Peabody Award-winning documentary team, the boxing studio show The Fight Game with Jim Lampley, the innovative talk show partnership with Uninterrupted, The Shop, and the landmark reality series Hard Knocks and 24/7, which have garnered 16 and 18 Sports Emmy® Awards, respectively.
Since assuming leadership of the division, Nelson has engineered a re-boot of the department’s documentary space, fashioning projects that include Bill Simmons, the WWE, LeBron James and Maverick Carter of SpringHill Entertainment and the Zimbalist Brothers (Michael and Jeff). The HBO and IMG Original Content partnership generated the highly visible multi-part douc series BEING SERENA in the spring of 2018 that chronicled the life of tennis superstar Serena Williams. Nelson fostered a relationship with the NBA for unscripted programming that began with the 2018 presentation Courtside at the NBA Finals. He also executed a long-term renewal of the acclaimed reality series Hard Knocks with the NFL.
Nelson joined HBO Sports in 2011 as director of sports and became vice president, programming, HBO Sports in 2013. Prior to HBO, Nelson worked at an art advisory firm in Beverly Hills, Harvard’s Villa I Tatti in Italy, and later as a journalist, having previously done editorial work for Harper’s Magazine and writing for the New York Times, among other publications. In addition, Nelson wrote for HBO’s groundbreaking documentary series 24/7. His reporting was recognized by The Boxing Writers Association of America for best feature writing in 2010.
Nelson holds a BA in Ancient Greek, with magna cum laude honors, from Harvard University, where he also wrote for the Lampoon. He is involved with the humanitarian non-profit the International Rescue Committee, as well as the Harlem Educational Activities Fund. He is a native of Newton, MA.