October 14, 2009 - Women's Professional Soccer (WPS) - Chicago Red Stars
BRIDGEVIEW, Ill. - Chicago Red Stars founding President and CEO Peter Wilt is stepping down today to assume a similar post with his hometown Milwaukee Wave of the National Indoor Soccer League, the Red Stars announced today. Wilt will remain one of the Red Stars owners as well as one of its board managers. Wilt shall continue as one of the team\'s representatives on the Women\'s Professional Soccer Board of Governors and as President of the Chicago Red Stars Charitable Foundation.
"The timing and the opportunity were both right," Wilt said. "From the beginning, three years ago, I planned to spend the time necessary to launch the team and shepherd the Red Stars through their first season. We hired (General Manager) Marcia (McDermott) with the full expectation that we would make this orderly transition at the right time."
Wilt was named President/CEO of the Wave, the nation\'s oldest professional soccer team, at a news conference in Milwaukee this afternoon. Wilt joins the team 10 weeks after Wisconsin entrepreneur Jim Lindenberg was introduced as the new Wave owner on Aug. 5. Wilt will continue to help the Red Stars in his other roles.
"I\'m excited about the chance to oversee and grow a team that gave me my start in soccer in 1987 in the city I\'ve called home for the last 30-plus years, but I will miss the day-to-day connection with Marcia and the rest of the Red Stars\' staff," Wilt said. "I feel good about the foundation we\'ve built in Chicago and Marcia is more than ready.
"The Red Stars have established a tremendous brand and organization and have already created tens of thousands of emotional connections with fans throughout Chicagoland," Wilt said. "Just like with the Fire, I will remain an avid supporter present at many games."
Marcia McDermott will take over many of Wilt\'s responsibilities. "I am excited for Peter and grateful for all the guidance he has provided over the past two years. I have had an opportunity in working for him to learn from the best," McDermott said. "I am glad that Peter remains an integral part of our leadership. You can be sure I will continue to seek his input as we build on what he has created."
Gary Weaver, the founding owner of the Red Stars added, "We simply could not have launched the Red Stars in Chicago without Peter\'s leadership and energy. He will continue to influence our direction through his role on the board - and we expect to see him at games, of course."
PETER WILT BIO:
Hometown: McHenry, Ill. (currently lives in Whitefish Bay, Wis.)
High School: Marian Central Catholic (Woodstock, Ill.), Class of 1978
College: Marquette University (Milwaukee, Wis.), Class of 1982 - Journalism
- President and CEO of Milwaukee Wave (National Indoor Soccer League), Oct. 14, 2009, to present
- President, CEO and Co-owner of Chicago Red Stars (Women\'s Professional Soccer), 2006 to 2009; founding president of the Chicago Red Stars Charitable Foundation. (Will remain as one of the Red Stars owners, an organization board member, team representative on the WPS Board of Governors and President of the Red Stars Charitable Foundation.)
- CEO of Milwaukee Professional Soccer, in an effort to bring a Major League Soccer franchise to Milwaukee, 2005 to 2007
- President and General Manager of Chicago Fire (Major League Soccer), 1997 to 2005; founding president of the FireWorks For Kids Foundation
- President, General Manager and Co-owner of Minnesota Thunder (U.S. Interregional Soccer League), 1994 to 1997
- National Director of Sales and Marketing of Continental Indoor Soccer League, 1994
- General Manager of Chicago Power (National Professional Soccer League), 1990 to 1994
- Director of Public Relations of American Indoor Soccer Association, 1987 to 1989
- Director of Marketing and Publicity of Milwaukee Wave (National Professional Soccer League), 1987 to 1990
- Sports Reporter for United Press International in Milwaukee, 1979 to 1982
- 2006, Chicago Fire\'s Ring of Fire inductee
- 2006, Farnese Hall of Fame inductee
- 2004, Illinois Soccer Hall of Fame inductee
- 2004, Marian Central Athletic Hall of Fame inductee
- 2002, Naperville Person of the Year by the Daily Herald
- 1998, Major League Soccer Executive of the Year
- 1998, Northwest Herald Sportsman of the Year
Chicago Fire championships:
- 2003, U.S. Open Cup
- 2003, Supporters Shield
- 2002, U.S. Open Cup
- 1998, MLS Cup
- 1998, U.S. Open Cup
- 1999, MN Thunder USISL Post-season Champion (Co-owner)
- 1995, MN Thunder USISL Regular Season Champion (Pres/GM/Co-owner)
- 1990-91 and 1991-92, Chicago Power NPSL Regular Season Champion (GM)
- 1990-91, Chicago Power NPSL Playoff Champion
The Chicago Red Stars completed their inaugural Women\'s Professional Soccer season earlier this year. Season tickets for the 2010 season are currently on sale. For more information, log on to www.ChicagoRedStars.com or call 866-WPS-2009.