After a few days of speculation and rumors, the Pittsburgh Pirates have officially named Travis Williams as the team’s new president
Last Wednesday, the Pittsburgh Pirates and team president Frank Coonelly mutually parted ways. This came after Coonelly spent 12 seasons as the team’s president. Almost immediately, speculation started to swirl that Travis Williams would replace Coonelly as the team’s president.
Well, after five days of speculation things have come to fruition. The former president of the Pittsburgh Penguins has now officially been named the new team president of the Pittsburgh Pirates.
After spending over a decade with the Penguins, Williams left the organization in October of 2018. He left to join the New York Islanders where he was serving as the president of business operations.
During his time with the Penguins Williams oversaw the day-to-day operations business and arena operations for the team. With the Penguins he played a pivotal role in the construction of PPG Paints Arena and the UPMC Lemieux Sports Complex.
With the Pirates a big part of his role will include public relations and marketing. There are few teams in professional sports that do better in these two areas than the Penguins do. During his time with the Penguins the team would routinely rank at or near the top of the NHL in merchandise sales, TV ratings and social media engagements. Combine all of that with the fact that they do it in the same market that Williams will be looking to do it in with the Pirates is a big plus. Especially when you consider the amount of PR/marketing disasters the Pirates have brought upon themselves over the years.
Williams will have his work cut out for himself with the Pirates. The team is currently in search of a new manager and coaching staff, and, depending on who you choose to believe, they may also be in the market for a new general manager soon. That, however, may prove to be up to Williams.