Former Vice Chairman and CEO, San Diego Padres
Former General Partner and CEO, Arizona Diamondbacks
One of the most recognizable names in professional sports, Jeff Moorad brings more than 25 years of sports industry experience to San Diego. In February 2009, Moorad and a California-based group reached an agreement to purchase 100 percent ownership of the Padres over several years.
When Moorad was named a member of the executive team of the Arizona Diamondbacks in 2004, he brought a wealth of experience in Major League Baseball on the player side of the table. While with Arizona, Moorad was a general partner, chief executive officer, the spokesman for the D-backs’ ownership group, and oversaw, along with Ken Kendrick, the day-to-day operations of the franchise.
The founder of Moorad Sports Management, he began specializing in athlete representation in 1983, with his main focus on Major League Baseball. Moorad’s client base took off in 1984 when he was retained by Will Clark and four other members of the U.S. Olympic baseball team, each of whom were Top 10 draft choices. He then joined forces with Leigh Steinberg in 1985 to form one of the most dynamic twosomes in the history of sports representation, covering both Major League Baseball and the National Football League. The successful duo negotiated more than $3 billion in athlete contracts throughout their 18 years together, including representing Pro Football Hall of Famers Steve Young, Troy Aikman, Warren Moon and Thurman Thomas. Moorad was the negotiator on a number of landmark contracts for a baseball client base that included Manny Ramirez, Eric Karros, Ivan Rodriguez, Mo Vaughn, Shawn Green and Raul Mondesi.
Moorad’s reputation as a knowledgeable and respected negotiator has earned him a spot on The Sporting News’ 100 Most Powerful People in Sports on eight occasions, as he helped revolutionize player representation. He represented more than 40 first-round selections from baseball’s annual First Year Player Draft in his practice, highlighted by breakthrough deals for No. 1 overall selections Darin Erstad (1995) and Pat Burrell (1998), as well as No. 2 overall selection Travis Lee (1996), all draft records at the time.
While sports representation occupied the majority of Moorad’s professional time, it also led to work in the entertainment field as he has consulted and appeared in major motion picture projects involving sports. He and former partner Steinberg both served as technical consultants to director Cameron Crowe and appeared in his 1996 Oscar-winning picture “Jerry Maguire.” Additionally, Moorad was the baseball technical consultant for the Universal motion picture “For Love of the Game” and had a cameo appearance in the movie.
The former president and CEO of Moorad Sports Management, his firm did not stop at athlete representation as Moorad guided it into a variety of sports technology ventures, publishing projects and community charitable projects. Consistent with his civic commitment, Moorad helped his clients understand the responsibility of serving as role models in the community, encouraging them to contribute millions of dollars to community programs, including their own non-profit foundations and alma maters. Leading by example, Moorad endowed a $100,000 baseball scholarship to his alma mater, UCLA.
He and his wife, Jan, were the honorary chairpersons for Childhelp USA’s Childhelp Drive the Dream Gala. He has also been very active in the California Coast and Arizona Chapters of the Young Presidents’ Organization (YPO), a worldwide peer network that creates better Presidents and CEOs through education and idea exchange.
Moorad is also active in helping to raise funds to find a cure for amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), more commonly known as Lou Gehrig’s disease, through Augie’s Quest. The foundation is named after his good friend Augie Nieto, who was diagnosed with ALS in 2005 after he became one of the most successful innovators in the U.S. fitness industry as the founder, chairman and CEO of Life Fitness. Moorad helped link Augie’s Quest to the Muscular Dystrophy Association, as well as assist in fast-track research funding at Phoenix-based Translational Genomics Research Institute (TGen), where scientists have already made significant research breakthroughs in less than four years.
Moorad currently serves on the board of directors at TGen and is a vice president for the MDA. He formerly served on the board of Oakley until the sale of the company to Italian manufacturer, Luxottica, and Citizen Sports Network until its sale to Yahoo!
Moorad ventured into the sport of NASCAR, purchasing controlling interest in Hall of Fame Racing from Roger Staubach and Troy Aikman.
A native of Modesto, Calif., Moorad earned an Associate in Arts degree from Modesto Junior College in 1976, where he served as student body president, a degree in political science (B.A.) in 1978 from UCLA, then received his law degree from Villanova University School of Law (J.D.) in 1981. Moorad and his wife have three sons.