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Medal of Leadership Logo

Pro Sports Assembly’s Medal of Leadership Awards recognizes trailblazers who embody the spirit of inclusive leadership and who have positively impacted the professional sports industry.


Pro Sports Assembly strives to elevate members who are building strong, healthy and fair organizations and communities. The Medal of Leadership Awards were inspired by two leaders who lifted inclusive leadership to new heights: Jason Jenkins and Cynt Marshall. They have leveraged their positions of influence to benefit the greater good and epitomize what it means to be a PRO.

The 2024 Medal of Leadership Awards will be presented at The Assembly Leadership Retreat on June 5, 2024.


General nomination information:

  • Nominees must currently work in professional sports and meet award criteria to be eligible for nomination
  • The identity of nominees shall be treated confidentially by the selection committee 
  • Honorees are chosen by the selection committee based on information provided in the nomination form


Inaugural Honorees – Meet the Class of 2023

Xavier Gutierrez
Jason Jenkins "Victory For Humanity" Award

Michele Roberts
Marshall Award for Values in Sports

Mary Kate Meals
Rising Leader Award

Lester Jones
Visionary Leadership Award







More About The Awards

Jason JenkinsJason Jenkins "Victory for Humanity" Award

The "Victory for Humanity Award" was created in honor of Jason Jenkins, the late Senior Vice President of Communications and Community Affairs for the Miami Dolphins and a founding member of PRO, serving on the Governing Board as Chair of Communications. Jason was an exceptional leader - a unifier of people and a champion in the community. The Jason Jenkins "Victory for Humanity" Award is presented to a Pro Sports Assembly member for significantly leveraging their position of influence to create lasting impact in the community. 

  • Be employed full-time at a professional team, league, union, or venue at the time of nomination
  • Demonstrate commitment to serving in the community
  • Serve as a positive role model
  • Demonstrate leadership and vision to unify people across all backgrounds


Marshall Award for Values in Sports

The Marshall Award for Values in Sports was created in honor of Cynthia "Cynt" Marshall, CEO of the Dallas Mavericks. As the first Black female CEO in the NBA, Cynt represents strength and impact for the organization, its greater community and the professional sports ecosystem. The Marshall Award for Values in Sports is presented to a trailblazing Pro Sports Assembly member who exemplifies Character, Respect, Authenticity, Fairness, Teamwork and Safety. 

  • Be employed full-time as a senior-level executive at a professional team, league, union, or venue at the time of nomination
  • Be an advocate for inclusive leadership and equity within their organization and in the broader community
  • Demonstrate commitment, cooperation, and allegiance in promoting excellence in the professional sports industry
  • Demonstrate leadership and vision in their organization and the industry


Rising Leader Award 

The Rising Leader Award recognizes a full-time pro sports executive (0-10 years of experience) who has made an exemplary impact early in their career. This award calls attention to an individual with an outstanding commitment to excellence.

  • Possess 0-10 years of professional sports experience at a team, league, union, or venue
  • Nominee must exhibit effective leadership skills at their organization;
  • Demonstrate involvement in the community (specific examples should be provided);
  • Show a clear sense of growth and success in their role (specific examples outlining skills, responsibilities, and accomplishments should be provided)


Visionary Leadership Award 

The Visionary Leadership Award is presented to a senior-level (director and above) professional sports leader. Throughout their career, this individual has shown excellence inside their organization, in their community, and is dedicated to building the next generation of leaders.

  • Be employed full-time as a senior-level executive at a professional team, league, union, or venue at the time of nomination
  • Have 11+ years of professional sports experience
  • Be committed to inclusive leadership and equity;
  • Demonstrate a commitment to professional development and mentorship;
  • Demonstrate leadership and vision in their organization and the professional sports industry


About The Medal

The hand holding the torch symbolizes the passing of the torch to the next set of pro sports leaders. The PRO letters are included in the torch to show the strength of the community that we have in the PRO Sports Assembly organization. The laurel wreath represents the triumph and success that leaders in pro sports have and show daily. The rays in the background represent the rays of light and power that each individual holds to create a positive change in their organizations and communities. The people and stars in the outer circle represent all individuals in pro sports and the Pro Sports Assembly.

Meet the Designer
Emilio Cortez is a member of Pro Sports Assembly with a background in visual arts. In 2023, Emilio designed the inaugural Medal of Leadership design. He currently works for the San Francisco 49ers as a coordinator in the 49ers EDU program. He is also a founding member of the 49ers L.E.A.D (Latinx Empowerment, Advancement & Development) ERG.





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