Top-10 list features industry leaders, athletes and entrepreneurs
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. — USA Triathlon CEO Rob Urbach tops the Inside Triathlon list of 2013’s 10 Most Influential People in Triathlon, featured in the January/February 2014 issue of the publication.
“I am humbled to receive this honor and to be recognized alongside so many other notable contributors to our sport,” Urbach said. “2013 was a fantastic year for USA Triathlon and the entire triathlon community. I look forward to what 2014 holds.”
Identified as “The Strategist,” Urbach was recognized for his role in a number of organizational successes, including the growing USA Triathlon membership base, which increased seven percent for adults and more than twice that for youth. USA Triathlon’s Age Group National Championships, the organization’s signature event, has nearly tripled in participation numbers since Urbach’s first year in 2011. He has been a driving force in raising the profile, marketing and competitiveness of the event. Urbach also brought the ITU World Triathlon Series to the United States through a successful bid-to-host campaign for Chicago in 2014 and 2015. This includes the Grand Final coming to American soil for the first time in series history in 2015.
With a focus on hosting safe and fair events, Urbach commissioned a blue-ribbon panel of physicians to study race-related fatalities, resulting in the “Shared Responsibility” doctrine. He conceived USA Triathlon’s Splash & Dash Youth Aquathlon Series, with 40 races nationwide in 2013, as well as the new USA Triathlon Retro Series, with the aim of introducing the multisport lifestyle to new audience, and the improved USA Triathlon rankings and results system. Urbach also introduced real-time membership verification, which has greatly streamlined the race registration and packet picket process creating efficiencies for the race directors and athletes, and he established The USA Triathlon Foundation, the organization’s official charitable arm.
Click here for Urbach’s excerpt from the Inside Triathlon 10 Most Influential People in Triathlon feature (PDF).
Prior to USA Triathlon, Urbach was instrumental in some of the largest sponsorship deals in sports history for elite clients such as Michael Jordan, Andre Agassi and David Beckham. He was also a developer and producer of live and televised sports events, and a veteran of sport agency roll-ups. Urbach’s résumé includes Octagon, one of the top global sports management and marketing firms; SFX Sports Group, a division of Clear Channel Communications; and Cortview Capital Markets, where he provided services to sports industry clients. He is an MBA recipient from The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania, and a graduate of Centre College in Danville, Ky.
The 10 Most Influential People in Triathlon list also recognized 2012 U.S. Olympic Triathlon Team member Gwen Jorgensen, who had a standout year on the ITU World Triathlon Series circuit as the first-ever U.S. woman to win a WTS event, the first of three wins she earned over the season (San Diego, Yokohama, Stockholm); Andrew Messick, CEO of the World Triathlon Corporation; Australian Ironman triathlete Craig Alexander; Bahram Akradi, CEO of Life Time Fitness; triathlon coach and former U.S. world champion Siri Lindley; Slowtwitch.com founder Dan Empfield; Felix Walchshofer, CEO of the Challenge Family series; Newton Running founder Danny Abshire; and Seton Claggett, founder of TriSports.com, USA Triathlon’s official merchandiser.
About USA Triathlon Founded in 1982, USA Triathlon is proud to serve as the National Governing Body for triathlon – the fastest growing sport in the U.S. Olympic Movement – as well as duathlon, aquathlon, aquabike, winter triathlon, off-road triathlon and paratriathlon in the United States. USA Triathlon sanctions more than 4,300 races and connects with more than 550,000 members each year, making it the largest multisport organization in the world. In addition to its work with athletes, coaches, and race directors on the grassroots level, USA Triathlon provides leadership and support to elite athletes competing at international events, including International Triathlon Union (ITU) World Championships, Pan American Games and the Summer Olympic Games. USA Triathlon is a proud member of the ITU and the United States Olympic Committee (USOC).