Mark A. Tatum
Mark Tatum was appointed NBA Deputy Commissioner and Chief Operating Officer on Feb. 1, 2014, following unanimous approval by the NBA Board of Governors. Tatum, a 16-year veteran of the league office, is responsible for the NBA’s business operations, including overseeing the Global Marketing Partnerships, Global Operations and Merchandising, and Team Marketing and Business Operations departments. He also oversees the Women’s National Basketball Association and the NBA Development League, as well as the league’s Communications, Content and Marketing groups. Through his leadership skills and extensive industry relationships, Tatum has been influential in guiding and growing the league’s business since joining the NBA in 1999.
Prior to assuming his current role, Tatum served as Executive Vice President of Global Marketing Partnerships, where he managed the Business Development and Media groups, which work with the league’s extensive list of marketing and media partners. Tatum has worked with senior executives from the most recognizable brands in sports marketing, including The Coca-Cola Company, Anheuser-Busch InBev and adidas to strategize about the direction of NBA-themed promotions and advertising.
Tatum has expanded the NBA’s relationships with long-time partners like Nike and Gatorade, and has been a key driver of new partnerships to the league. Tatum was also responsible for the NBA’s media sales, including sales of NBA TV, NBA.com, and other NBA-controlled media. He managed the sales relationships with the league’s TV partners – ABC/ESPN and TNT. In addition, Tatum was responsible for developing USA Basketball’s marketing plan and sales strategy, and its overall relationship with the NBA.
Since joining the league, Tatum has held several positions, including Senior Vice President and Vice President of Business Development, Senior Director and Group Manager of Marketing Properties, and Director of Marketing Partnerships.
Prior to joining the NBA, Tatum worked for Major League Baseball in their Corporate Sponsorship and Marketing department. Tatum has also worked for The Clorox Company as a Regional Sales Manager, where he was responsible for Northeast sales. In 1997, he worked for the Pepsi-Cola Company in their Sports Marketing department. From 1991 to 1995, he held a number of sales management positions with Procter & Gamble.
Tatum received a bachelor’s in business management and marketing from Cornell University in 1991 and is a 1998 graduate of Harvard Business School. While at Harvard, he was elected President of the Harvard Business School Student Association. He is on the Cornell College of Agricultural and Life Sciences Deans Advisory Council, the Cornell Athletic Alumni Advisory Board and the Harvard Business School Club of New York Board. Tatum also sits on the Board of Trustees for the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame, the Board of Directors for USA Basketball, the International Basketball Federation (FIBA) Central Board, and the Board of Directors for The Partnership for Drug-Free Kids. He serves as a trustee at the Princeton Day School and most recently became a member of the Executive Leadership Council, a national organization that empowers African-American corporate leaders to make significant and impactful contributions in the global marketplace and their communities.
Tatum was honored by the SportsBusiness Journal with a Forty Under 40 Award three years in a row (2006, 2007, and 2008), making him an entrant into the SportsBusiness Journal Forty Under 40 Hall of Fame. In 2014, SportsBusiness Journal named Tatum to its list of the 50 Most Influential People in Sports Business.