U.S. Soccer hires William Wilson as CEO and Secretary General
CHICAGO – Launching a new era for the organization, William Wilson has been named the new Chief Executive Officer and Secretary General of the U.S. Soccer Federation.
With 29 years of leadership and experience in the international and domestic sports industry – at the agency, league and team levels – Wilson, 52, is a seasoned executive who brings a strong vision and a proven track record of developing and implementing sound strategies in all aspects of the business. He joins U.S. Soccer from global sports agency, Wasserman, where he served as Executive Vice President and Co-Head of Football for the last eight years. He will officially begin in the role on March 30 and will eventually relocate to Chicago.
“We are thrilled Will is joining U.S. Soccer as our CEO,” said U.S. Soccer President Cindy Parlow. “He brings an unrivaled set of experience and expertise to soccer in America. His global perspective, background in marketing and growing sporting events and extensive experience in the sports business will be invaluable in growing soccer at all levels. Soccer is the world’s game and Will is the perfect person to help us grow it to America’s game.”
Wilson’s vision helped launch Wasserman’s NFL representation practice with the signing of Andrew Luck, the No. 1 pick in the 2012 NFL Draft, whose 2016 contract extension was then the largest in league history. The division has grown to represent more than 100 NFL players with senior agents located across the country, one of the most comprehensive in the sport. As an NFLPA Certified Contract Advisor, he has a deep understanding of labor issues as well as working within the constructs of a Collective Bargaining Agreement.
Prior to Wasserman, Wilson served as Executive Vice President of International Business & Special Events for Major League Soccer (MLS) and Soccer United Marketing (SUM) from 2008-12. Fluent in Spanish, he oversaw the League’s international game business.
“I’m very excited to be joining U.S Soccer,” said Wilson. “I have always admired the Federation from afar and have long felt that the U.S. Soccer crest is one of the best brands in the business. There is nothing like harnessing our nation’s support behind our Women’s and Men’s National Teams, and I see significant upside in our ability to work with our Membership to grow participation levels, increase our commercial business and drive our ability to compete on the field at the highest level.”
During his time with MLS and SUM, Wilson managed all international business relationships, including FC Barcelona, Manchester United, the Concacaf Gold Cup™, and the game partnership with the Mexican Football Federation. Wilson’s group also oversaw MLS’s marquee events, including their annual MLS All-Star Game and MLS Cup.
Wilson brings an additionally varied background, including positions with the Arena Football League (AFL), the Champ Car World Series (né CART), and the National Football League. Wilson served as Managing Director of NFL Mexico and oversaw all aspects of the league’s business in Latin America. Wilson also served in public relations roles with the NFL Europe League Frankfurt Galaxy and Scottish Claymores for nine years before being promoted to General Manager of the Claymores in 1998. Born in London, England, Wilson graduated from Kenyon College in Gambier, Ohio where he was a four-year varsity athlete in American football. Additionally, he holds an MBA from the Tecnológico de Monterrey Graduate School of Business (EGADE) in Monterrey, Mexico.
“U.S. Soccer has an amazing fan base and our supporters are waiting for us to get things back on track both on and off the field,” said Wilson. “I’m incredibly energized and excited about the work in front of us to continue striving to become America’s preeminent sport.”