USA Cricket: First board finalised; 2 Indian-origin names in 3 Independent Directors

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Friday, September 30, became a golden letter day for the history of USA Cricket. The International Cricket Council (ICC) has confirmed the finalisation of the inaugural USA Cricket Board with three Independent Directors. Two of them – Paraag Marathe and Rohan Sajdeh – are persons of Indian origin.

The inaugural USA Cricket Board of Directors was finalized yesterday (Friday) with the announcement of three Independent Directors in a historical landmark for cricket in the United States.

Following a recommendation from the independent Nominating and Governance Committee, the three positions were approved by the seven Constituent Directors. The three Independent Directors have a wealth of knowledge and experience which will bring great value to the USA Cricket Board, International Cricket Council has confirmed in a Press release.

Catherine Carlson, Senior Vice President Corporate Partnerships and Premium Activation, Orlando Magic; Paraag Marathe, President of 49ers Enterprises and Executive Vice President of Football Operations, San Francisco 49ers; and Rohan Sajdeh, Senior Partner and Managing Director, Boston Consulting Group have been confirmed as the first Independent Directors of the USA Cricket Board.

The appointment of the three USA Cricket Independent Directors is the next step in an extensive, thorough and transparent process designed to assemble a Board of Directors that can unite the US cricket community and achieve cricket’s undoubted potential in the world’s most competitive sports market. The first Chair of the Board will be elected at the inaugural Board meeting next month and will be announced shortly thereafter. Attention will now focus on an application by USA Cricket for membership to the ICC.

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ICC Chief Executive David Richardson welcomed the latest development as a major milestone not only for cricket in the United States but also the game globally. “USA Cricket now has a governance structure and a high calibre Board that we believe positions the organization well to achieve its enormous potential. A successful US cricket administration is great for world cricket and we are delighted with the quality of board candidates who have been selected from an incredibly impressive field and we think the global game will benefit from their expertise,” said Richardson.

Catherine Carlson who will serve a three-year term is a sponsorship sales, strategic partnerships and business development expert. Prior to her work with the Orlando Magic NBA team, Catherine has spent over 10 years at Disney’s Wide World of Sports which included modified junior sports programs and sports tourism initiatives.

“Having grown up with cricket as a child in Australia, I strongly believe cricket is a game that the United States will increasingly grow to love. Data from the ICC’s recent global research indicates that there is already a significant base of cricket fans in the United States. However, sustainable growth and development of cricket here requires revenue from a diverse inventory of commercial platforms and I am looking forward to applying my knowledge and experience in this area as a member of the USA Cricket Board,” said Catherine.

Paraag Marathe, who has spent 18 seasons with the 49ers as the club’s chief contract negotiator and salary cap architect, and overseen the construction of the Levi’s Stadium, will serve a two-year term. “I am looking forward to this unique and exciting challenge. I believe the United States has the potential to be a major player in international cricket and we can inspire this country to fall in love with this great game. This is an incredibly talented and passionate Board of Directors and I am looking forward to working with them so that this major international sport can achieve its potential here in the United States,” said Marathe.

Rohan Sajdeh, who is a Corporate and Business Strategy specialist bringing extensive US sport experience including from cricket, motorsports, football and golf, will be serving a one-year term. “I am fortunate to have led strategic projects across the full sporting ecosystem in the U.S. and internationally in my time at the Boston Consulting Group, including impactful work in cricket related to the Indian Premier League and the recently announced ICC Test Championship. I am incredibly excited to have an opportunity to bring my experience to bear on the challenge of establishing cricket as a major sport here in the United States,” said Sajdeh.

The three independent directors join the seven elected representatives of the Board – Avinash Gaje, Individual Director; Venu Pisike, Individual Director; Suraj Viswanathan, Individual Director; Nadia T. Gruny, Female Player; Usman Shuja, Male Player; Ajith Bhaskar, Club Director and Atul Rai, League Director.

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