What do boxing promoter Don King, tennis superstars Serena and Venus Williams, and Mason Ashe '85 have in common? The answer is a place on Sports Illustrated's list of the "101 Most Influential Minorities in Sports."
Ashe, chief operating officer and general counsel for one of the largest minority-owned sports marketing and management companies in the U.S., was named to SI's list for the second consecutive year. He appears in 53rd place, one behind his business partner, Bill Strickland, in the magazine's June 28, 2004, issue. Last year the duo placed 42nd and 43rd.
According to SI, Strickland and Ashe Management represents "more than 40 entertainers and athletes -- including Rasheed Wallace, Allan Houston and Daunte Culpepper -- and last October, Strickland became chair of the Black Entertainment and Sports Lawyers Association. Ashe is the executive producer and marketing agent for Soul Spectacular on Ice, the first touring ice show featuring African-American figure skaters."
Arturo Moreno, owner of the Anaheim Angels, is SI's pick as the most influential minority in sports. Golfer Tiger Woods is second, and Yao Ming, center for the Houston Rockets, comes in at third. To qualify for the list, a person had to have "the power to hire and fire (or substantially influence those who do), hold a significant senior-level position with a team, league or major sports enterprise or have a profound economic impact on the sports economy."