Sounders FC is unique in Major League Soccer and American professional sports in its openness to feedback from and inclusion of its season ticket holders. That culminates December 9 marks at the fifth Sounders FC Annual Business Meeting at WaMu Theater.
Majority Owner Joe Roth will be there to answer questions. As will Owner/General Manager Adrian Hanauer, President Peter McLoughlin and others from the Sounders FC offices. Owner Drew Carey will not be in attendance, but will participate in the event via Skype. Already questions are pouring in from Alliance members and the Council is weeding through them to determine which will be presented to everyone in attendance. Others will be answered online after the event.
“It will be interesting to say what GM Adrian Hanauer has to say as an update of what is happening on the team side,” said Vice President of Business Operations Bart Wiley on the SoundersFC.com Roundtable last week.
The concept of the Business Meeting came from Carey’s idea of bringing democracy in sports to the Sounders. That point was evident last year in the announcement that Hanauer would be retained as General Manager after receiving a vote of approval from the Alliance last year.
While that vote happens every four years, there are still plenty of interesting topics at this year’s meeting.
The event is open to Season Ticket Members and is the year-end event for them to get an inside look at the organization.
Throughout the year, though, 42 members of the Alliance Council meet monthly with the front office. Each Council member got 25 votes from other Season Ticket Members to earn their seat on Council and are utilized as conduits between the Sounders FC front office and the team’s fans.
“We sit here in the front office and there are smart, ambitious people who are doing the best job they can, but we’re in our own little bubble. It’s great to get that outside perspective from someone who is passionate about the club and somebody who might have a completely different idea or way of thinking than what we are thinking internally,” Wiley said. “To have those types of folks who want to get engaged is important.”
The Council has evolved over the years, as has the Business Meeting, and continues to grow.
“We’ve been working with them, and thankfully they’ve been very patient with us, to walk down the road and determine together what Council is going to do,” Wiley said. “We want to continue to grow with them and make sure that they feel like they’re a valuable part of the organization.”