Building Indy’s Brand around Sports and Entertainment

Join the Department of Tourism, Event, and Sport Management’s (TESM) Industry Advisory Council as they present NEXTGEN Indy: Building Indy’s Brand around Sports and Entertainment.

The council is excited to deliver the opportunity for you to access leaders in Indy's hospitality, tourism, sports, and events. Join us to hear Indianapolis tourism and sport leaders as they discuss future growth and development in Indianapolis. Featured panelists include Leonard Hoops, president & CEO, Visit Indy; Taylor Schaffer, president & CEO, Downtown Indy; Patrick Talty, president, Indiana Sports Corp; and Patrick Tamm, president & CEO, Indiana Restaurant & Lodging Association.

You’ll be able to ask questions, network, and be the first to hear research findings on GEN Z’s perceptions of Indy, currently being conducted by Visit Indy, IUPUI’s Sports Innovation Institute, and SMARInsights. You’ll walk away with new information and insights to inform your business practices. All of your business problems won’t be solved immediately, but you will be part of the forward-thinking team that builds Indy’s brand around sports and entertainment.

Event details

Wednesday, March 22

IUPUI University Tower/Hine Hall Auditorium
3:30 p.m.–5:30 p.m.
Check in at 3 p.m.
Light reception following event

Parking available under University Tower/Hine Hall or in the North Street Parking Garage (819 W. North Street, Indianapolis, IN, 46202); validations provided.


Headshot of Leonard Hoops, Visit Indy.

Leonard Hoops

President & CEO, Visit Indy

At the helm of Visit Indy since 2011, Leonard Hoops champions the community’s efforts to grow its nearly $6 billion convention, tourism, and event business. Under his leadership, Visit Indy has shattered all-time records for sales and helped Indianapolis earn the #1 convention city in America and top visitor destination rankings.

Headshot of Taylor Schaffer, Downtown Indy Inc.

Taylor Schaffer

President & CEO, Downtown Indy

A passionate advocate for attracting, retaining, and engaging talent in Indianapolis, Taylor Schaffer leads Downtown Indy while serving the community simultaneously on several local boards of directors. Previously, Schaffer served in a variety of roles within city government, including chief of staff and chief deputy mayor of Indianapolis.

Headshot of Patrick Talty, Indiana Sports Corp.

Patrick Talty

President, Indiana Sports Corp

Patrick Talty is a strong contributor to Indy’s sports scene. His leadership abilities are evident, and creating a path for mega sporting events to resume post-pandemic is a testament to his acumen. Talty’s team brought sports back to Indy beginning with the 2021 NCAA Division I Men's Basketball Championship—a monumental success for the city.

Headshot of Patrick Tamm, Indiana Restaurant and Lodging Association.

Patrick Tamm

President & CEO, Indiana Restaurant & Lodging Assn

As the Indiana Restaurant & Lodging Association (INRLA) leader, Patrick Tamm manages and promotes the interests of INRLA’s members, representing approximately 400,000 Hoosiers and $30 billion in state revenue. An advocate, lobbyist, management, and policy pundit, Tamm also manages trade associations and advises governmental affairs for his firm, Tamm Capital Group.


Headshot of Deputy Mayor Judith Thomas from Indianapolis.

Judith Thomas

Deputy Mayor, City of Indianapolis

Deputy Mayor Judith Thomas was appointed by Mayor Joe Hogsett as the Deputy Mayor of Neighborhood Engagement in January 2021. She currently leads the mayor’s neighborhood advocate program; the mayor’s action center; and the Offices of Minority and Women Business and Development, International and Latino Affairs, Veteran Services, and Parks and Recreation.

Research partners

Headshot of Denise Miller from SMARI Insights.

Denise Miller

Executive Vice President, SMARInsights

Proven market researcher Denise Miller brings 40-plus years of accomplished experience in marketing and research to the GEN Z study. She’s led Strategic Marketing & Research Insights (SMARInsights) since 2014. A go-to resource, Miller designs and conducts studies focused on visitor perceptions, destination selection, customer satisfaction, and advertising efficacy.

Headshot of David Pierce, Sports Innovation Institute.

David Pierce

Director, IUPUI Sports Innovation Institute

As the Sports Innovation Institute leader, David Pierce and his students collaborate on the business side of sports with the likes of the Indianapolis Colts, Indianapolis Indians, NCAA, Incrediplex, Grand Park, Beyond Monumental, and more. Pierce’s work in sports fan experiences, marketing, and management delivers evidence-based solutions to clients.

Welcoming remarks

Headshot of Interim Chancellor Klein.

Andy Klein

Interim Chancellor, IUPUI

Andrew R. Klein was appointed interim IUPUI chancellor on March 1, 2022. The Paul E. Beam Professor of Law in the Robert H. McKinney School of Law, Klein joined the IUPUI law school faculty in 2000 and served as associate dean for academic affairs from 2004 to 2007. From 2010 to 2013, Klein served as chief of staff for the IUPUI chancellor and associate vice chancellor for university academic affairs. In 2013, he became the law school dean. His classroom instruction has garnered numerous awards, and Klein is well-published as an active scholar and legal expert.


Mike Karnuta headshot

As TESM council co-chair, I have the privilege to convene and collaborate with other industry pros who lend their time and expertise. It’s a win-win. We support experiential learning, employment, and volunteer experiences for students as we simultaneously develop future industry leaders. This panel discussion is timely, as our city and industry continue to compete for top talent to support growth and development.

Mike Karnuta, Chief Development Officer, Indiana Sports Corp

TESM council members

Sara Adams
500 Festival

Amy Ahlersmeyer
Indiana State Museum

Meaghan Banks
Pacers Sports & Entertainment

Matt Bauschek

Jon Codalata
Indianapolis Colts

Casey Collins
Indianapolis Motor Speedway

Mike Karnuta, Council Co-chair
Indiana Sports Corp

Sarah Keeker
Plum & Poppy Weddings and Events

William Knox
Legacy Sport Group

Brian Krohn
IU Tourism, Event, and Sport Management

Kellie Leeman
Indianapolis Motor Speedway

Noah Legler

Kevin MacCauley
Upper Hand

Denise Miller

Karen Radcliff
Hamilton County Tourism

Mie Young Reed
JW Marriott and Indianapolis Marriott Downtown

Jeff Robinson
Visit Indy

Garrett Rosh
Indianapolis Indians

Bob Schultz
Downtown Indy

Scott Spillman
Mudsock Youth Athletics

Jessi Stas
Legacy Sports Group

Patrick Tamm
Indiana Restaurant & Lodging Association

Karl Traeger
Indianapolis Zoo

Amy Vaughan, Council Co-chair
IU Tourism, Event, and Sport Management