A familiar face, or rather voice, has joined the Indiana Pacers this month as director of corporate communications.
Radio talk show host Eddie White took his new post Dec. 20, and promises to ratchet up corporate outreach for the Blue and Gold. He will report directly to Pacers Vice President of Corporate and Public Relations Greg Schenkel.
From 2008-09, White co-hosted an afternoon drive-time talk show on WFNI-AM 1070, with Indianapolis Star sports columnist Bob Kravitz. That duo was later replaced by John Gliva, known by his on-air handle JMV.
White stayed on part-time with the local Emmis Communications’ sports-talk radio station, and while Emmis market manager Charlie Morgan said he expects White to continue part-time, White said his No. 1 priority is the Pacers.
“I don’t think I’ll do the radio any time soon,” White said. “My focus is with the Pacers. I’m amped up about this, and there’s a lot of work to be done.”
Though White may be best known for the two plus years he’s been on the air, he has a longer history working on the team-side of sports.
During the early part of his career, White worked for one of the best-known collegiate sports marketers, University of Notre Dame sports information director Roger Valdiserri.
In addition to his stint in South Bend, White also worked as the director of public relations and marketing for the Miami Dolphins before embarking in 1989 on a 20-year career with Logo 7, which morphed several times before being acquired by Reebok. At Reebok, White was the liaison between the company and all 32 of its National Football League team clients.
At Reebok, White became well-known among players, coaches and front office executives. It was his longing for contact with a team’s players, coaches, executives and corporate partners that drove White back to working for a professional team, he said.
“I wanted to get back to the team side,” White said. “I’ve really missed that. I’ve known Herb and Mel Simon a long time, and this opportunity just came up. When it did, I didn’t hesitate. The Pacers have so many great untold stories. I’m available and eager to help any department here that I can.”
White said he will work closely with the team’s corporate partners, but also hopes to work with Pacers’ marketer Conrad Brunner on some special features for the team’s Web site.
"Conrad does a great job and has some really good ideas for the Web site," White said. "I can't wait to get in there and help any way that I can."
White has some history with the Pacers and basketball. His wife’s parents have been season ticket holders since 1967. White’s grandfather, was a long-time basketball coach, working with the likes of former University of Iowa and USC coach George Raveling and Bob Knight mentor Clair Bee.
“This is a dream job for me,” White said. “Working for a team I love in a sport I love. My feet haven’t touched the ground in a week.”