This June, join UJA to honor Fanatics’ Gary Gertzog with the David J. Stern Leadership Award. ESPN’s Adam Schefter will serve as the Master of Ceremonies.
We’ll pay tribute to Gary’s professional esteem and philanthropic commitment to UJA and to the 20 years of impact UJA’s Sports For Youth has had on kids of every age, athletic ability, and background in our greater community.
We’ll also hear about UJA's humanitarian response to the war in Ukraine and our ongoing Covid recovery efforts.
Dietary Laws Observed.
Please note: for journal packages listed below, we can no longer accept journal ads, but table reservations are available. Please reach out to Maya Spector at for more information.
About Sports For Youth
Sports For Youth convenes executives from across the industry to bring the life-changing impact of participating in sports to kids of every age, athletic ability, and background throughout the five boroughs, Westchester, Long Island, and overseas. We even the playing field so that kids can participate regardless of the financial or physical challenges they might face.
The David J. Stern Leadership Award
Gary has had a distinguished career in the sports industry. As president of Business Affairs for Fanatics, he’s been a driving force behind the company’s transformation from a domestic e-commerce company to a leading global digital sports platform encompassing all aspects of sports licensed products, trading cards, NFTs, and online sports betting.
His unique knowledge of the sports business, creative deal-making skills, and strong relationships throughout the industry have led to a series of long-term and exclusive relationships with leading sports leagues, players associations, professional and college teams, performance brands, and retailers. These deals serve as a central part of the differentiated business model that recently resulted in Fast Company naming Fanatics one of the World’s Most Innovative Companies. In the last year, Gary was instrumental in Fanatics’ swift and successful entry into the trading cards and collectibles space.
Prior to Fanatics, Gary spent 20 years at the NFL. He served as SVP and general counsel and oversaw all business and legal affairs for the commercial units of the NFL, having worked across every aspect of the league’s business portfolio. Gary was responsible for many industry setting deals, led the development of a new commercial rights model between the NFL and its clubs, and helped create a new private equity vehicle to invest capital in companies in the sports space.
Gary started his career as a lawyer in New York City at the law firm of Townley and Updike, and eventually became a partner specializing in intellectual property licensing and protection. He is a graduate of George Washington University Law School where he served on the Law Review, and Cornell University where he received a B.S. in industrial and labor relations. Gary has been an active participant in UJA for several years and is passionate about youth sports, having served as a coach for various youth teams in Westchester, where he still resides with his wife, Lori. He has two adult children, Allison and Bryan, who live in New York City.
Adam Schefter is a Senior NFL Insider at ESPN. He joined ESPN as an NFL Insider in August 2009 and now appears on a variety of programs, including NFL Live, Sunday NFL Countdown, Monday Night Countdown, SportsCenter, and more throughout the year. He also hosts his own ESPN Audio podcast, The Adam Schefter Podcast, and regularly contributes to other ESPN platforms, such as ESPN.com and ESPN Radio.
One of the top sports reporters in the country, Schefter has covered the NFL since 1990, and his social media influence is unmatched in the industry. Schefter’s reporting is consumed by millions of NFL fans on his and ESPN’s social media channels, where his connections, tenacity, and breaking-news prowess adds to the growth and reach of the ESPN brand. Currently, Schefter has nearly 12 million followers, including 9.4 million on Twitter, another 1.5 million on Instagram, and nearly a million on Facebook.
Schefter has earned numerous accolades for his work. Sports Illustrated’s NFL site, The MMQB, named him the 2014 Media Person of the Year for breaking multiple significant stories during the NFL’s free-agent period and off-season. In February 2014, Schefter was named “the most influential New Yorker on Twitter,” according to data from social media company PeerIndex. In October 2010, Sports Illustrated included Schefter in its “Power 40+,” a listing of the most influential people involved in the NFL. SI also ranked him and Senior NFL Insider Chris Mortensen at No. 13 on its list of the Most Powerful People in Sports Media in March 2013. Schefter was voted “Best Insider” three straight years in USA Today conducted fan surveys.
Before joining ESPN, Schefter was a reporter/analyst for NFL Network (2004-2008) and a sportswriter for more than 15 years for the Denver Post and the Rocky Mountain News, where he covered the NFL and the Denver Broncos team that won back-to-back Super Bowls. He was the Colorado Sports Writer of the Year in 2002 and 2003 and frequently appeared on ESPN’s Around the Horn and The Sports Reporters during his time with the Post.
A native of Bellmore, New York, Schefter graduated from the University of Michigan in 1989 and later earned his master’s degree at Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism in 1990.
The David J. Stern Leadership Award was established in 2021 and is presented to an individual in the sports industry who embodies David’s legacy of social responsibility, generosity, and professional excellence. A founder of Sports For Youth, David was a powerhouse attorney who served as the commissioner of the National Basketball Association from 1984 to 2014, during which time he oversaw the league’s global expansion and popularity in contemporary culture.
Sports For Youth Council
Gary B. Bettman
Seth J. Finkel
Russell E. Wolff*
*Sports For Youth Executive Committee member
Commemorative Journal Close Date: Wednesday, June 1, 2022
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UJA policy requires that all event attendees be fully vaccinated against Covid-19. Please bring proof to the event. This event will be held in accordance with applicable laws and regulations, including current local, state, and CDC guidelines, to protect the health and welfare of our staff and guests.