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MY360

MY360: New Chapter

Thursday, 05.20.2010 / 9:26 AM / Blogs
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MY360: New Chapter
As our esteemed Alternate Governor Bill Torrey said, Tuesday was a great “hockey day” for the Florida Panthers organization, as we introduced new Executive Vice President & General Manager Dale Tallon at a press conference at the BankAtlantic Center.
 
Dale’s credentials speak for themselves – over 30 years with the Chicago Blackhawks organization, architect of the team we are now watching in the Western Conference Finals, over 600 games as an NHL defenseman.
 
But yesterday, what really struck me, and got me excited about the future of this franchise, is what he had to say…
 
 “I will do everything in my power to bring playoff hockey back to Florida and to eventually attain the goal of winning the Stanley Cup. That’s the ultimate goal.”
 
“I’m committed to the blueprint that we developed in Chicago…and that’s the type of team we’re going to build here in Florida.”
 
“Our motto when we took over in Chicago was ‘Character, size, speed, skill and more character.’ And that’s what we’re going to adhere to.”
 
After Dale’s press conference, I had numerous people come up to me to say something along the lines of, “we’ve never heard someone talk like that around here.”
 
It wasn’t just what Dale said, but how he said it, and that he has the credentials to back it up. Of course, we wouldn’t be so fortunate to have Dale Tallon as our new General Manager, without the incredible work and intelligence of Bill Torrey, and the commitment from Managing Partners Cliff Viner and Stu Siegel, to go out and find the best GM possible.
 
The response thus far, has been tremendous. Once the press release went out on Monday, we started getting phone calls and e-mails, just to say what a great hire we’ve made. That continued with great columns from the Miami Herald’s David J. Neal and the Sun Sentinel’s Dave Hyde and Ethan Skolnick, all heaping praise on Tallon for his experience and abilities.
 
Around the office, the change in mood was palpable – our employees truly feel as if this is the opening of a great new chapter in Panthers history. And Dale isn’t waiting long to get to work. He is already in Germany meeting with head coach Pete DeBoer and then will make his way to the NHL combine next week in Toronto, before returning to South Florida for a Cats Cookout with fans ahead of June’s NHL Entry Draft.
 
Thanks to Randy Sexton – who should be commended for his class and professionalism throughout this transition process, as well as his years of service to the organization – we will enter the draft with four picks in the first two rounds and the most picks we’ve had in a number of years.
 
Those are tools that Dale will use to immediately put his stamp on this team, and it’s reason for our fans to be excited for what is ahead. It’s also yet another reason to participate in our You Make The Pick promotion on FloridaPanthers.com. For any fan that’s ever wanted to know what goes on behind the scenes at the NHL draft, both before and after the Panthers make their first round pick, this promotion is for you.
 
Of course, the general manager isn’t the only thing that’s going to be different at the BankAtlantic Center next season. We are already working on a new marketing campaign and ideas, as well as a load of new game presentation enhancements that will make the BankAtlantic Center one of the best parties in town every Panthers gamenight.
 
It certainly is a new beginning. Thanks for reading and go Panthers. 
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ABOUT MICHAEL YORMARK
SSE President & CEO

Since joining Sunrise Sports & Entertainment in September of 2003, Michael R. Yormark has guided the organization into a new era of growth and success.  For his efforts, devotion and dedication to SSE, the Florida Panthers and the BankAtlantic Center, he was promoted to the position of President on Aug. 13, 2007.
 
Yormark and his staff have worked diligently to build and re-brand Florida Panthers L.L.L.P. into Sunrise Sports & Entertainment, a first-class sports and entertainment company, and to ensure that the BankAtlantic Center lives up to its reputation as the “Center of it All” in South Florida. SSE serves as an umbrella for a diverse portfolio of operating entities that includes the BankAtlantic Center, the Florida Panthers, incredible ICE, the SSE Media Network and the Oz real estate development project.
 
Yormark has built SSE into a comprehensive company with its values rooted in innovative marketing and public relations strategies, first-rate customer and client services, aggressive sales and diverse revenue pursuits. Under his leadership, the organization has retained his mantras of “dream big, dare to fail” and “anything is possible.”
 
In addition, Yormark has overseen dramatic improvements to the BankAtlantic Center in the last few years including two Las Vegas-style outdoor marquees’ and two huge Lobby Vision LED boards inside the arena’s lobby. He has also spearheaded an innovative sponsorship activation strategy that included the unprecedented venue naming rights partnership with BankAtlantic in 2005, the creation of his Brand Activation Team and the development of the Publix Kids Korner, IT’s Sugar Sweet Spot, groundbreaking Learning Experience Club House For Kids, and various other branded destinations that are the first of their kind in the professional sports industry.
 
Yormark has been consistently recognized for his tireless work ethic, creative philosophies and renowned leadership through national awards and exposure such as the SportsBusiness Journal’s Forty Under 40 Award, the Stanley Cup of Business, the City of Sunrise Business Leader Award, the South Florida Business Journal’s Business of the Year Award Nomination, profiles in Newsweek magazine, Sports Illustrated, American Way Magazine and on CNBC, one of the South Florida Sun Sentinel’s Most Influential People, a top 12 worldwide ranking for the BankAtlantic Center in Pollstar Magazine for 2009, an Arena of the Year Nomination from Pollstar and more.
 
Yormark has also dedicated considerable time to the South Florida community including acting as President of the City of Sunrise Foundation, sitting on the board of the Boys & Girls Club of Broward County and being a member of the Young President’s Organization.
 
That said, Yormark continues to expand the business and build the SSE brand through projects such as the expansion of incredible ICE and the development of the area surrounding the BankAtlantic Center in Sunrise through Oz.
 
Before joining SSE, Yormark spent four seasons with Palace Sports & Entertainment and the Tampa Bay Lightning, most recently as Executive Vice President, where he was a Tampa Bay Business Journal Forty Under 40 Award Winner and brokered the naming rights partnership that saw the Ice Palace become the St. Pete Times Forum. He has also served as Vice President of Integrated Sales and Broadcasting for the Columbus Blue Jackets. He began his professional career in corporate sponsorship sales with the New York Yankees and eventually joined the media rep firm Katz Communications in New York City, where he oversaw sports sponsorship sales for their affiliated television stations. From there, Yormark joined Front Row Communications, the marketing and broadcasting arm of Wayne Huizenga's sports holdings. In four years as Vice President of Sales for Front Row, he helped rebuild Sportschannel Florida and assisted in the opening of the BankAtlantic Center.
 
Yormark and his wife Dana and daughter Sophia reside in Boca Raton.
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