Scott C. ButeraButera

AFL Commissioner
PH: 702-802-3905 ext. 352

EDUCATION: Trinity College (B.A.) / New York University, Leonard N. Stern School of Business (MBA)
AFL EXP: 1st Season


An avowed sports enthusiast who played football at his alma mater Trinity College in Hartford, Commissioner Butera has spent most of his career in top management positions with nationally recognized entertainment brands such as Foxwoods and Tropicana Entertainment.

At Foxwoods (2011-present), a property with over $1.0 billion in annual revenues, he led the restructuring of the Resort's finances and operations through business development and marketing programs aimed at repositioning the brand. He secured sports partnerships with professional teams in Boston (Red Sox) and New York (Yankees, Rangers, Knicks, Nets, Madison Square Garden) to help spearhead the effort.

As CEO of Tropicana Entertainment (2008-11), Butera engineered the company's emergence from Chapter 11 bankruptcy and, in the process, helped to revitalize the iconic brand through improved marketing and property redevelopment.

Butera honed his business operations skills as Chief Operating Officer of the Cosmopolitan Resort and Casino in Las Vegas. Prior to that he was President, Chief Operating Officer, and Executive Vice President of Trump Entertainment Resorts, Inc.

Butera's financial background includes 20 years in investment banking with UBS Investment Bank, Credit Suisse First Boston, Smith Barney and Bear Stearns & Co. During that time he concentrated on analysis and client service for companies in the real estate, lodging, gaming and leisure industries. The new Commissioner earned his MBA at New York University's Leonard N. Stern School of Business. He recently served as a member of the Board of Fellows at Trinity College.

Jerry B. KurzJerry Kurz

AFL President
PH: (312) 465-2216

EDUCATION: University of Oklahoma (B.A.) / Northern Illinois (J.D.)
HOMETOWN: Glenview, Illinois
AFL EXP: 28th Season


After successfully resurrecting the AFL in 2009, Kurz spent five seasons as the League's Commissioner before being named AFL President in 2014... Kurz has been involved with Arena Football for 28 years, including five seasons as President of the af2...In efforts to relaunch the AFL in 2009, Kurz developed a unique economic model for the league... Led a group of enthusiastic investors in the acquisition of the AFL's assets in bankruptcy court and revived the Arena Football League in 2010.


Served as the AFL's Vice President of International Development from 1987-2008 and Commissioner from 2010-2014... Responsible for administering the H3 Visa Program, allowing international players to play for AFL teams stateside... While serving as the Vice President of International Development, Kurz promoted and conducted 21 international games.


Founding member of Gridiron Enterprises, Inc., a sports consulting firm based out of Chicago, Ill.... Gridiron Enterprises, Inc., which was the original founder of the AFL, includes Kurz, Jim Foster, the creator of Arena Football, and attorney William Niro.


Jerry B. Kurz returns for his 28th season of Arena Football and first season as the AFL's President. Out-tenured only by the creator of Arena Football, Jim Foster, Kurz has dedicated his life to furthering the sport with a strong business ethic and core values meant to bring the highest quality product to the ever-growing fan base of arena football fans.

In his time as the president of the af2, the League saw extensive growth in small-to-mid sized markets, building an extremely dedicated fan base across the country. That foundation helped to fuel the return of the Arena Football League in 2010 after a year on hiatus due to financial instability. Kurz and a group of enthusiastic investors arranged the acquisition of the AFL's assets in bankruptcy court in late 2009 and revived the League in early 2010, fulfilling the promise that Arena Football would be played in 2010.

Kurz has also served as the AFL's Vice President of International Development, where he was in charge of the League's international exposure. During his tenure, he was responsible for administering the H3 Visa program, allowing international players to play for AFL teams stateside. He also arranged and executed all internationally played games for the Arena Football League.

Arena Football isn't Kurz's only claim to fame. He is also a founding member of Gridiron Enterprises, Inc., a sports consulting firm based out of Chicago. Gridiron Enterprises, consisting of Kurz, Foster and attorney William Niro, is the original founder of the AFL. Kurz has been a player, a coach, a general manager and an owner during his lifelong involvement with the game of football. He is also a member of four football Halls of Fame, including membership in the first class of the Arena Football Hall of Fame as well as membership in the arenafootball2 Hall of Fame.

Kurz attended the University of Oklahoma as an undergraduate and later earned his Juris Doctor Degree at Northern Illinois. Kurz is a licensed attorney in Illinois and operated a law firm with his wife, Kathryn Hall, for 20 years. Jerry and his wife, Kathryn, have one son named Matthew, who currently serves as the Director of Player Personnel for the AFL.

Christie CookCook

AFL Vice President
PH: (312) 465-2214

COLLEGE: University of Oklahoma
HOMETOWN: Anadarko, Oklahoma
AFL EXP: 14th season


Cook is entering her 14th year with the Arena Football League and second as a member of the League office staff ... After working with Oklahoma Wrangers (AFL) from 2000-03, Cook joined the Oklahoma City Yard Dawgz (af2) in 2004... After just one year, Cook was promoted to Assistant General Manager... In November 2006, Cook's role was elevated to the role of General Manager of the Oklahoma City franchise.


Prior to joining the Yard Dawgz, Cook was a member of the Oklahoma Wranglers of the Arena Football League... In 2000, she worked as a marketing and promotions intern and game day operations assistant... In 2001, Cook was promoted to Director of Floor Operations.


Cook attended the University of Oklahoma where she earned her Bachelor of Science in Health & Sports Sciences in 1999 and her Master of Science in Sports Management in 2002... Cook began her sports career at the University of Oklahoma working in the Athletic Department as a Student Athletic Trainer for both football and women's basketball.


Cook has a strong reputation as a leader and innovator in the field of game operations and production... She has also helped serve as a liaison for the All College Basketball Tournament and NBA exhibition games... Cook also spent the 2004-05 hockey season as Producer for all home games for the Oklahoma City Blazers... In 2006, Cook served as the Director of Game Day Operations for the University of Central Oklahoma Athletic Department (football)... Daughter of Mike and Glenda Cook of Norman, Okla.

Joe KleinsmithKleinsmith

Senior Director of Football Operations PH: (312) 465-2215

COLLEGE: Indiana University
HOMETOWN: Cleveland, Ohio
AFL EXP: Fifth Season


Enters his fifth season in the AFL and fifthwith the League Office... Joined the AFL in 2010 after its one-year absence as the Manager of Football Operations... After jumpstarting football operations league-wide in 2010, Kleinsmith was promoted to Director of Football Operations... Utilizing his extensive football background, Kleinsmith also played professionally for the Mahoning Valley Thunder (af2) and collegiately for Indiana University.


This highly touted recruit received a full-scholarship to play football at Indiana University.... Began his career with the Hoosiers as a kicker and was one of just three freshmen to see action... Almost immediately, Kleinsmith had impact and tacked a career-long 39-yard field goal... During his sophomore season, Kleinsmith transitioned to defensive back... While notching eight starts, Kleinsmith was a three-time Academic All-Big Ten selection in four years... Kleinsmith ranked third on the team with tackles during his senior campaign after tallying 56 tackles.


Born Joseph Anthony Kleinsmith in Cleveland, Oh.... Son of Anne and Kevin Kleinsmith and sister, Jane... Enjoys playing sports and spending time with his English Bulldog, Bernie.

Anthony HerronHerron

Senior VP of Communications
PH: (312) 465-2212

COLLEGE: University of Iowa
HOMETOWN: Bolingbrook, Illinois
AFL EXP: Eighth Season


Herron is entering his third season with the AFL League Office... After starring at the University of Iowa as a defensive lineman, Herron played for five years in the NFL before playing and coaching over the course of five seasons in the AFL... He quickly turned his on field experience into a successful career in sports broadcasting where he serves as a game and studio analyst for NBC Sports Network... Herron also serves as a football analyst for "Arena Football Friday" broadcasts on NFL Network.


After his NFL career with the Lions, Packers and Falcons, Herron played four seasons in the AFL with the Indiana Firebirds, Nashville Kats and Grand Rapids Rampage... Herron transitioned to coaching and working in the front office for the Tennessee Valley Vipers in 2008... As an assistant coach with the Vipers, the team was crowned the ArenaCup champions.


The standout defensive lineman graduated with a degree in English from the University of Iowa... In 2000, Herron was named team captain and was a member of the All-Big Ten team... Herron was also a starter in the Blue/Gray College All-Star game in 2000.


Married to Katherine "Kelly" Herron... Herron resides in Chicago.

Araxie Grant

Vice President of Finance and Controller
PH: 702-802-3905 ext. 351

Eric Sterite

Vice President of Corporate Partnerships
PH: 702-802-3905 ext. 350

BJ PickardPickard

Director of Communications
PH: (312) 465-2204

COLLEGE: University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire (B.A.) / University of Washington (M.Ed.)
HOMETOWN: Eau Claire, Wisconsin
AFL EXP: Fifth Season


Enters his fourth season in the AFL and fourth with the League Office... Served as a Media Services and Public Relations intern for the AFL before joining the staff full-time in 2011 as the League's New Media Coordinator... Member of the 2011 NCAA Division I Men's Basketball Tournament Media Relations staff.


Spent the 2010 NBA season working in Public Relations for the Philadelphia 76ers... Since 2006, Pickard has coached football at the elementary, middle, high school, college and semi-pro levels, serving as a Quarterbacks Coach, Offensive Coordinator, and Consultant... He also worked as a student sports information writer and a software trainer as an undergrad at UW-Eau Claire.


Was a four-year varsity competitor on the nationally renowned University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire Forensics team... A 2010 American Forensics Association All-America nominee, Pickard was a National Forensics Association national quarterfinalist in 2010 and national runner-up in 2008... A two-time Wisconsin Collegiate Forensics Association state champion, Pickard was named Most Outstanding First-Year competitor in 2007.


Born Benjamin James Pickard in Eau Claire, WI... Son of Brent and Jan Pickard... The oldest of five children, Pickard enjoys coaching, writing, and spending time with his wife, Holly... He is also Green Bay Packers shareholder.

Wesley Friedman, Esq.Friedman

Corporate Counsel PH: (312) 465-2208

COLLEGE: The College of New Jersey (B.S.) / Nova Southeastern University (J.D.)
HOMETOWN: Marlboro, New Jersey
AFL EXP: Fifth Season


Friedman began his time with the AFL working with the Tampa Bay Storm as a Football Operations intern in 2010. Following the Storms' American Conference championship season, Friedman was promoted to the League Office.


Friedman has worked in multiple capacities in the sports and legal fields. Originally, Friedman started as a legal intern at the Mercer County Prosecutor's office of New Jersey, before moving into the sports agency field at Sports Capital Group.


Friedman thoroughly enjoys family, friends, and football. He spends time playing and watching all sports.

Robert C. DahillBob Dahill Headshot

AFL Advertising Sales LLC
PH: (203) 972-8517

COLLEGE: Villanova University (B.A.) / Boston University (M.S.)
HOMETOWN: New Canaan, CT 
AFL EXP: First Season


Dahill and his partner Larry Fried, formed AFL Advertising Sales, LLC, the exclusive national sales arm of the Arena Football League. The team will look to develop advertising and marketing partnerships utilizing all of the assets of the AFL on air, online, and on-site. Dahill and Fried are based in greater New York City.


Dahill has held a number of executive sales positions in the national advertising sales marketplace. Before joining the AFL he had been Director of Broadcast & Cable Sales for ADWEEK. He has also served in senior sales positions with Trifecta Entertainment, Nokia, Sony International TV and Paramount Pictures. Earlier in his career he was SVP GSM for The Family Channel and later the SVP Advertising Sales for the Fuse Network.


Dahill received his undergraduate degree from Villanova University in History where he also played club lacrosse. He later received his graduate degree from Boston University in Broadcast Journalism. Following his graduation from Villanova, Dahill served in the U.S. military as an officer in the Army Signal Corps


Bob and his wife Susan have two girls who reside in NYC and pursue careers in marketing and law.

Lawrence S. Fried

AFL Advertising Sales, LLC
PH: (312) 465-2217

: University of Denver BSBA; Bernard M. Baruch Graduate School of Business
AFL EXP: First Season


Fried and his partner, Robert Dahill, formed AFL Advertising Sales, LLC, the exclusive national sales arm of the Arena Football League. The team will look to develop advertising and marketing partnerships utilizing all of the assets of the AFL on air, online, and on-site. Fried and Dahill are based in greater New York City.


Fried has extensive experience as an executive in advertising and national television. Prior to joining the AFL, he was VP National Sales at SQAD, where he created, patented and sold NetCosts, a system to aggregate national TV costs from actual transactions. Earlier, Fried spent 20 years at the ABC TV Network where he was EVP Marketing and General Sales Manager and then 2 years at ESPN as EVP Customer and Event Marketing. Fried also spent 13 years at ad agencies negotiating national TV schedules for some of America's largest marketers.


Fried graduated from the University of Denver with a degree in marketing and then attended Bernard M. Baruch Graduate School of Business. Fried also served for 6 years in the US Army Reserve.


Larry was born and raised in New York City and has two children and two granddaughters.

Candice HallHall

Staff Accountant
Hanover Park, Illinois
AFL EXP: Second Season
PH: (312) 465-2203

COLLEGE: University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign


Enters her second season in the AFL and first season with the League Office... Served as the Accounts Payable Administrator for the Chicago Bears for four seasons... Worked for an IT consulting firm as an accountant prior to joining the AFL staff...Has a passion for football and can't wait for the season to start!


Majored in Technical Systems Management with a strong focus in business...Played intermural soccer and officiated intermural volleyball.


Enjoys being active with friends and trying new things...Has a passion for travel and believes that the best way to see the world is through cruising...Hobbies include going to the movies (and not missing the previews, which are the best part), and watching and attending all types of sporting events from skateboarding to football and everything in-between....Is a huge country music fan and enjoys line dancing....Self-proclaimed foodie and plans all vacation time around food joints.

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