Don Garber was named Commissioner of Major League Soccer, the premier professional soccer league in the United States and Canada, in 1999. During his tenure, MLS has expanded from 10 to 29 clubs, added 26 new owners and secured long-term broadcast agreements with ESPN, FOX and Univision and major broadcasters in Europe, Asia and South America. Garber has also led efforts to develop 23 soccer stadiums in the United States and Canada, and a minimum of two more soccer venues will open during the next few years.
Early in his tenure, he created MLS WORKS, a League-wide community outreach initiative dedicated to addressing important philanthropic and social issues.
In 2002, Garber created Soccer United Marketing (SUM), an affiliate of MLS and one of the world’s leading commercial and media soccer companies. SUM represents a wide variety of soccer properties, including Concacaf, the United States Soccer Federation and the Mexican Soccer Federation.
Prior to joining MLS, Garber spent 16 years in a variety of sales, marketing, programming and event management positions at the National Football League. In 1996, he launched NFL International, a division he managed that was responsible for all aspects of the NFL’s business outside the United States.
Commissioner Garber serves on a variety of professional and philanthropic boards, including the Board of Directors for the United States Soccer Federation and Hope and Heroes, an organization raising funds and creating programs for pediatric cancer patients at New York Presbyterian Hospital. He also is a member of FIFA’s Football Stakeholders Committee and serves as the Vice-Chairman of the World Leagues Forum.
A 2018 inductee into the National Soccer Hall of Fame, Garber has received an Honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters from both Montclair State University and the State University of New York.
Moderator: Joe Leccese, Chairman Emeritus & Co-Chair, Sports Group, Proskauer