Dr. William A. Sutton is a distinguished academician and a proven sports marketing practitioner. Sutton’s body of work includes notable academic appointments and extensive industry experience. An expert who educates and engages, Sutton possess a distinct combination of professional experiences that blend his savvy business acumen with his significant university credentials. His academic and industry career experiences are diverse and form a unique prism to observe the sports marketing and sports business landscape. Sutton’s consultation work has spanned the industry, working with professional leagues, teams, organizations, brands, universities, agencies, and facilities. Dr. Sutton currently holds an appointment as Professor Emeritus of Marketing and Director Emeritus of the Vinik Sport and Entertainment Management Graduate Program at the University of South Florida and is the founder and principal of Bill Sutton & Associates, a consulting firm specializing in strategic marketing, revenue enhancement and organizational chemistry.
Dr. Sutton employs a hybrid approach, influenced heavily by his wide-ranging work experiences: including tenures at sports marketing agencies, professional leagues and nationally acclaimed Sport Management programs. He is the co-creator and architect of the innovative and groundbreaking Sports Sales Combine. CNBC.com hailed the Sports Sales Combine, a careers concept inspired by the NFL Draft Combine, as potentially the “the next great idea in sports marketing”.
Prior to his retirement from USF, Sutton served as Vice President, Team Marketing and Business Operations for the National Basketball Association. In this capacity, Dr. Sutton assisted NBA teams with marketing related functions such as sales, promotional activities, market research, advertising, customer service, strategic planning and staffing. Dr. Sutton also held academic appointments at Robert Morris University, the Ohio State University, and the University of Massachusetts – Amherst, and the University of Central Florida.
Dr. Sutton is a co-author of 2 texts: Sport Marketing (4th Ed 2014) and Sport Promotion and Sales Management ( 2nd Ed 2008) published by Human Kinetics. He is also co-editor of the Handbook of Sport Marketing Research (2012) and Sometimes it’s more than Black and White, a collection of columns from his popular sport industry column, Sutton Impact from Street & Smith’s Sports Business Journal. Dr. Sutton has also authored more than 300 articles (refereed and non-refereed) and has made more than 250 national and international presentations. Dr. Sutton a past president of North American Society for Sport Management (NASSM) is a founding member and past President of the Sport Marketing Association (SMA) and the Sport Marketing Quarterly – a publication where he has also served as the co-editor. Sutton is frequently called upon by members of the media for his insight and commentary on the sports business industry including: USA Today, The New York Times, CNBC.com, The Washington Times, Fox Business, The Orlando Sentinel, South Florida Sun-Sentinel, Advertising Age and Brandweek.
Dr. Sutton’s professional experience also includes service as a special events coordinator for the City of Pittsburgh, a YMCA Director, Vice President of Information Services for an international sport-marketing firm, and Commissioner of the Mid-Ohio Conference.
A native of Pittsburgh Pennsylvania, Dr. Sutton holds three degrees (BA 1972, MS, 1980, and Ed.D. 1983) from Oklahoma State University, where he was inducted into the College of Education Hall of Fame in 2003 and received a Distinguished Alumni award from Oklahoma State University in 2020. Dr. Sutton is also an inaugural member of the Robert Morris University Sport Management Hall of Fame (2006) and the Centenary University Sport Management Hall of Fame in 2018. Dr. Sutton and his wife Sharon reside in Tampa and Clearwater Beach, Florida.