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McCormack, Mark H.

Mark McCormack

Induction Year : 2002

Sport: Golf

Founder, Chairmen and CEO of the Cleveland-based sports and entertainment conglomerate International Management Group (IMG), he is recognized worldwide as the pioneering force behind the development of the sports marketing industry, an industry which revolutionized sports by establishing athletic representation as a distinct business. A native of Chicago he was a standout golfer at the College of William and Mary, qualifying for the U.S. Open and several U.S. and British amateur championships. Following college and a stint in the service, he accepted a position with a prestigious Cleveland law firm where he decided to combine his legal and business skills with his love of golf to go into the athletic representation business in 1960. a handshake deal with a young golfer he had met in college named Arnold Palmer launched his enterprise. Soon after, he signed an unknown South African golfer named Gary Player and a newly turned professional named Jack Nicklaus, and IMG was off to a very healthy beginning. Today, operating with 83 offices in 32 countries, its multifaceted businesses cover magnitude of enterprises in broadcasting, the classical music world, recreational facilities development and corporate consulting. The world’s largest athletic representation firm, it still numbers Palmer amongst its clients along with the likes of Tiger Woods, Joe Montana, Wayne Gretzsky, Monica Seles, Wimbledon, the British Open and the Nobel Foundation.