TORONTO, Ont. (January 9, 2020) – Canada Basketball announced that Brian Cooper has been appointed as Co-Chair of its Board of Directors, effective today.

“We are very pleased to welcome Brian back to our Board of Directors and will look to utilize his expertise and experience to provide invaluable insight as we continue to grow the game of basketball across Canada,” said Glen Grunwald, President & CEO, Canada Basketball.

Cooper will join Rob Wright as Co-Chair, replacing Wayne Parrish. Parrish, CEO of Canada Basketball from 2007 to 2015 and Chair the past five years, will remain a director, and member of the Executive Committee as Past Chair.

Currently the Chair of MKTG (formerly S&E Sponsorship), a leading sponsorship agency in Canada, Cooper has negotiated more than $1 billion worth of sponsorship agreements with brands such as Canadian Tire Corporation, Scotiabank, adidas, and Molson.

With more than 30 years of experience in athlete representation, activation management, broadcast programming, executive-level property leadership and sport marketing, Cooper rejoins the Canada Basketball board of directors after previously serving from 2004 through 2017.  

“I am excited to rejoin the Canada Basketball Board of Directors,” said Cooper.  “Basketball is at a moment in time in our country where grassroots participation is growing at a tremendous rate, not only attracting boys and girls to play and love the game, but providing our national teams with a talent level that we have never seen before.  

“There are more Canadian athletes excelling in the NBA and the WNBA than any other point in history,” Cooper continued.  “Add to that the excitement the Toronto Raptors brought to our country with their NBA championship win and the future looks bright for the long-term development and success of basketball in our country.”

Cooper has also served on the charitable boards of the Hockey Canada Foundation, Toronto Blue Jays Foundation, the Stratford Festival, and Toronto Indy/Champ Car Foundation.

“Brian’s leadership and guidance, especially in the marketing and sponsorship areas, will undoubtedly help Canada Basketball’s business evolve, while our teams continue to chase their goals of a place on the podium,” said Rob Wright, Co-Chair, Canada Basketball Board of Directors.

Cooper was also President and Chief Operating Officer of the Toronto Argonauts, before joining Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment as Vice President, Business Development and Operations.

He was named one of the Globe and Mail’s Top 25 Power Players in Canadian Sports and was the first inductee to the Sponsorship Marketing Council of Canada’s Hall of Fame

With the appointment of Cooper, Canada Basketball’s board consists of 11 members, including:

- Brian Cooper, Chair, MKTG (Co-Chair)

- Rob Wright, Sr. Financial Advisor, IPC Investment Counsel (Co-Chair)

- Brian Bidulka, Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer, Postmedia Network Inc.

- Niko Carino, OVO 

- Nadine Crowley, Development and Education Lead, CBOC

- Joe Di Curzio, Trades and Engineers Navigator, Manitoba Start

- Shannon Hosford, Chief Marketing Officer, Maple Leaf Sports & Entertainment

- Basil Kavanagh, Associate Professor, School of Human Kinetics & Recreation, Memorial University

- Wayne Parrish, Principal, Sport Media Enterprises Inc.

- Candice Stasynec, Event Facilitator & Strategist, Always Game Consulting

- Masai Ujiri, President, Toronto Raptors