Chicago Red Stars hire new club president from U.S. Soccer
The Chicago Red Stars have appointed accomplished sports executive and attorney Karen Leetzow as the club's new president.
Leetzow joins the Red Stars after serving as the chief legal officer of the U.S. Soccer Federation, where she oversaw the independent investigation into abuse and sexual misconduct in women's soccer and also helped lead the successful negotiations for an agreement to ensure equal pay for the U.S. Women's National Soccer Team.
"Karen is a committed advocate for women in sports and her work with the U.S. Soccer Federation leadership team to create a new culture is beyond compare," said Laura Ricketts, Chicago Red Stars principal owner. "In her distinguished career she has gone beyond barriers and blazed a path for women to have a seat at the table of the C-suite of major sports enterprises and she has assured our athletes are protected and have a level playing field."
Before assuming the top legal role at U.S. Soccer, Leetzow was the first woman to serve as NASCAR's general counsel.
"I am grateful for the opportunity to join Laura Ricketts and her group of accomplished women business and civic leaders in changing the culture at the Chicago Red Stars and to build a championship organization on and off the pitch," Leetzow said. "I look forward to working with every team member in the business and technical staff of the Red Stars to achieve Laura's goal of creating a championship culture of excellence and accountability."
Leetzow played a pivotal role in leading U.S. Soccer through a definitive period of change while fostering an inclusive environment that positively impacted not just the Federation but soccer at every level.