Joe Franco of Franco Associates is a professional business and media consultant, career coach and educator. Joe began his career in broadcasting in 1979 when he helped to pioneer the cable industry with the launch of ESPN.

Aside from a three year period working for Satellite News Channel in Stamford, Connecticut and ABC News in Washington, DC, Joe devoted his entire broadcasting career to ESPN. Over the course of five decades, he held various management positions in production operations while also covering numerous national college and professional sporting events. He played a pivotal role in the launch of ESPN’s 24-hour news/information network, ESPN News and is the recipient of four national Emmy Awards.

Joe’s role at ESPN culminated when he became an ambassador for the ESPN brand with his transition to Manager of University and Diversity Relations under the human resources department. A strong relationship builder, Joe became a trusted mentor to students, and a respected partner to academia and career services advisors. During his tenure, Joe collaborated with more than 150 colleges and universities throughout the United States, and influenced countless young people who were awarded internships, co-ops and entry level opportunities with ESPN.

Since leaving ESPN in 2013, Joe has been involved in promoting new business ventures in sports, media and entertainment as an independent consultant. Business partners include Martel Communications, LLC, a full service telecom agency, where he serves as Chief Strategy Officer, and the American Basketball Enterprises and Elite Hoops Tournament (ABE/EHT). He also was recently named Senior Strategic Technology and Business Advisor to the Chairman for GNB, Inc.

Prior to developing Franco Associates, Joe co-founded a student targeted career consulting firm, Hired! Education, working in partnership with career services at educational institutions around the country. Today, he continues to help set students on a pathway to professional success through presentations to colleges and universities and one-on-one mentoring. Additionally, he is an adjunct professor at the University of New Haven in the School of Communication, Film and Media Studies.

Joe is a member of the Middlesex Community College Digital Media advisory board, New England School of Communications (NESCOM) advisory board and Southern Connecticut State University School of Sports Management advisory board. He has held key leadership roles in his local chapter of Business Network International (BNI).

Joe holds a BA in Communications from Southern Connecticut State University and an honorary BA in Communications from the New England School of Communications (NESCom) – Husson University in Bangor, Maine.

Joe lives in Cheshire, Connecticut with his wife Lisa and beagle, Bo.

Jack Swope

Jack SwopeFormerly Senior Vice President of Corporate Partnerships and Broadcasting of the Orlando Magic, he originally joined the organization as the assistant general manager/director of marketing in June of 1987, following 10 years with the Philadelphia 76ers to include the NBA title run of 1983.

The third person hired by the Magic, many of the Magic start-up operations are attributed to Swope, including the hiring of many of the front office personnel, along with overseeing all business operations and implementation of all Magic marketing strategies .

Jack has spent over 30 years in the NBA, with 21 of those seasons with the Orlando Magic. From 1995-2001 he had joint duties as the CEO of the Orlando Solar Bears, a member of the IHL, while holding the title of senior vice president of the Magic. The Solar Bears won the Turner Cup in 2001.

Swope served for four seasons as a member of the NBA’s Marketing Advisory Board, and for 15 years has attended the NBA Board of Governors meetings as a representative of the Magic.

Len Elmore

Len ElmoreAmerican sportscaster, lawyer and former ABA and NBA player previously served as Senior Counsel with LeBoeuf, Lamb, Greene & MacRae in New York City, where he currently resides. Len has also served as the president of the National Basketball Retired Players Association and as CEO of the joint NCAA and NBA initiative known as iHoops.

He also is a member of the Knight Commission on Intercollegiate Athletics.

Len was selected to the ACC 50th Anniversary men’s basketball team, honoring him as one of the 50 greatest players in ACC history.