Mason Ashe '85, chief operating officer and general counsel for one of the largest and most diversified minority-owned sports marketing and management companies in the U.S., has been named to Sports Illustrated's list of the "101 Most Influential Minorities in Sports."
Ashe appeared in 43rd place on the list, one behind his business partner, Bill Strickland, in the magazine's May 5, 2003, issue. According to SI, Strickland and Ashe Management has "30 to 40 clients in professional sports and entertainment, including Rasheed Wallace, Allan Houston, Daunte Culpepper and Levon Kirkland."
Black Entertainment Network (BET) founder and Charlotte Hornets owner Robert Johnson is SI's pick as the most influential minority in sports. Golfer Tiger Woods is second, tennis player Serena Williams is third and basketball great Michael Jordan is fourth. Others placing ahead of Ashe include Major League Baseball CFO Jonathan Mariner (11th), UCLA Athletic Director Dan Guerrero (28th), and Los Angeles Dodger Vice President and Assistant General Manager Kim Ng (38th). Ashe placed ahead of University of Virginia Athletic Director Craig Littlepage (46th), boxer Oscar de la Hoya (63rd), lawyer Johnnie Cochran (67th), baseball Hall of Famer Henry Aaron (90th) and basketball player Lisa Leslie (97th).
According to SI, "Ashe is partnered with Robert Johnson (No. 1) away from the game. Ashe serves on a national subcommittee chaired by Johnson to solicit donations on behalf of the William Jefferson Clinton Presidential Library in Little Rock."
Ashe received a bachelor's degree in psychology from Hamilton in 1985. After a brief stint in sales and marketing at Procter & Gamble he earned his law degree at the State University of New York at Buffalo Law School of Law. He spent four years focusing on sports and entertainment law as an associate in New York and North Carolina law firms where, according to his company biography, he was responsible for client development, contract negotiations, and the daily management of the business affairs of professional athletes, music producers, event promoters and recording artists. Ashe is a member of Hamilton's board of trustees.