University of Florida Online Master in Sport Management Logo - white version

Faculty

Alyssa Tavormina

Ph.D. in Sport Management, University of Georgia (2013)
M.S. in Sport Management, University of Florida (2005)
B.A. in Business Administration, University of Florida (2003)

Office: FLG 306
Address: P.O. Box 118208, Gainesville, FL 32611-8208
Contact: (352) 294-1663
Email: atavor@ufl.edu

Biography
Alyssa L. Tavormina, Ph.D. is a Lecturer and the Director of the Online Sport Management Master’s Program at the University of Florida in the Department of Sport Management. She holds her Ph.D. from the University of Georgia, and her main research interest evolve around sport marketing, specifically sport branding and sport consumer behavior. Prior to rejoining the faculty in the Department of Sport Management in 2014, she served as a Lecturer and the Internship Supervisor in the Sport Management Undergraduate Program, as well as the Faculty Advisor of the Gator Sport Management Club, from 2005-2008.

She is a member of the North American Society of Sport Management (NASSM) and the Sport Marketing Association (SMA). Dr. Tavormina has numerous presentations at national and international conferences related to the topics of sport branding and sport consumer behavior. Her work is published in journals such as the International Journal of Sport Management and Event Management. She has also co-authored multiple book chapters on sport branding.

Research Interests

  • Sport Branding (e.g., sport brand love)
  • Sport Consumer Behavior ( e.g., factors that affect consumers’ decisions to attend games)

Courses

  • SPM 5206 Sport Ethics
  • SPM 6726 Issues in Sport Law
Garrett Beatty

Ph.D. Biobehavioral Science, University of Florida (2015)
M.S. in Human Performance, University of Florida (2011)
M.Ed. in Curriculum & Instruction, University of Missouri (2007)
B.S. in Psychology, University of Florida (2005)

Office: FLG 140
Address: P.O. Box 118205, Gainesville, FL 32611-8208
Contact: (352) 294-1721
Email: gbeatty@hhp.ufl.edu

Biography

Garrett Beatty joined the College of Health & Human Performance as a Lecturer in August 2015. Garrett studied Biobehavioral Science under the mentorship of Dr. Christopher Janelle. Garrett’s research interests include studying the strategies individuals employ to regulate emotional experiences in order to improve human performance within emotionally charged environments. Garrett is also interested in investigating how social, psychological, pedagogical, coaching, and management principles can be leveraged to enhance the career and life development of athletes. As a lecturer, Garrett aims to disseminate knowledge garnered from cutting edge research to undergraduate and graduate students studying sport psychology, exercise psychology, and athlete development. Garrett is constantly seeking ways to incorporate technology into teaching strategies for on-campus, blended, and fully online courses.

Research Interests

  • Emotion Regulation & Motor Performance
  • Athlete Development

Courses

  • APK 3400 Introduction to Sport Psychology
  • APK 5404 Sport Psychology
  • APK 6408 Performance Enhancement
Trevor Bopp

Ph.D. in Sport Management, University of Florida (2010)
M.A. in Sport Management, University of Florida (2003)
M.A. in Business Technology, Marymount University (2001)
B.S. in Psychology, Mary Washington University (1998)

Office: FLG 242B
Address: P.O. Box 118208, Gainesville, FL 32611-8208
Contact: (352) 294-1663
Email: mtbopp@hhp.ufl.edu

Biography
Trevor D. Bopp, Ph.D. joined the College of Health and Human Performance in 2010 in a Lecturer role as well as Director of Technology for the Department of Sport Management.

Research Interests

  • Social Issues (e.g., racism, sexism, and discrimination)
  • Intercollegiate Athletics (e.g., student athlete experiences)

Courses

  • SPM 2000 Introduction to Sport Management
  • SPM 3204 Ethical Issues in Sport Management
  • SPM 4154 Administration of Sport and Physical Activity
  • SPM 4515 Sport and Business Finance
  • SPM 4905 Managing Intercollegiate Athletics
  • SPM 4948 Internship Experience
  • SPM 5016 Sport Sociology
  • SPM 6106 Planning and Management of Sport and Fitness Facilities
Dan Connaughton

Ed.D. in Sport Management, Florida State University (1995)
M.S. in Recreational Studies, University of Florida (1992)
M.S. in Physical Education, Bridgewater State College (1991)
B.S. in Exercise and Sport Sciences, University of Florida (1987)

Office: FLG 186B
Address: P.O. Box 118208, Gainesville, FL 32611-8208
Contact: (352) 294-1666
Email: danc@hhp.ufl.edu

Biography

Dan Connaughton, Ed.D., is a Professor in the Sport Management program. His research is largely focused on the study of law and risk management in sport and physical activity programs. Adopting a multi-methodological approach, his research has specifically investigated (a) risk perception; (b) risk management policies and practices; (c) awareness of and compliance with statutes, standards, and guidelines; and (d) injury/death prevention in sport and physical activity. His research findings have implications for influencing policy, improving risk management practices, and decreasing injuries, fatalities, and liability.

The American Heart Association has funded his research investigating “Implementation Constraints and Risk Management Practices Related to Automated External Defibrillators in Sport/Recreation Programs.” Additionally, since 2008, he has served as the principal investigator of the “Bicycle Safety and Risk Management Project” which is funded by the Florida Department of Transportation – Safety Office. The primary purpose of the project is to reduce the number of injuries and deaths to Florida’s bicyclists (Florida regularly leads the nation in the number of bicycling-related injuries and fatalities).

Connaughton is a Research Fellow with the Sport and Recreation Law Association, and Research Consortium of the AAHPERD. The author of many publications, he has received several teaching and research awards.

Research Interests

  • Risk perception
  • Risk management policies and practices
  • Legal and policy issues in sport and physical activity

Courses

  • SPM 4723 Legal Issues in Sport and Physical Activity
  • SPM 6726 Issues in Sport Law
  • SPM 6716 Risk Management in Sport and Physical Activities
Matt LaCoille

All my professors were very well-connected in the sport industry and offered real-world perspectives in each of my classes.

Matt LaCoille
Assistant Director, Athletics and Parent Giving
New England College

Doug DeMichele

M.S. in Recreational Studies, University of Florida (1987)
B.A. in Physical Education, University of Central Florida (1984)
Ed.D. in Higher Education Administration, University of Florida (1998)

Office: FLG 330
Address: P.O. Box 118208, Gainesville, FL 32611-8208
Contact: (352) 294-1660
Email: dougd@hhp.ufl.edu

Biography
Douglas DeMichele, Ed.D., has been a faculty/adjunct faculty member in the Department of Sport Management since 2001 and has been teaching in the areas of campus recreation, facility management, leadership, special events, programming and professional development (field experience and internships). Each semester he leads his department in placing 100+ student interns pursuing degrees in tourism, recreation or sport management.

Prior to joining the faculty full-time in 2004, DeMichele’s responsibilities included serving as the Associate Director of Recreational Sports (Programs) at the University of Florida, where he was responsible for 800 student employees. This administrative role required the oversight of $1 million budget and the administration to ensure the delivery of a comprehensive Intramural Sports, Sport Clubs and Fitness Program. He also assisted in the planning and construction phases of three major recreation projects on the UF campus.

DeMichele was recognized as the HHP Teacher of the Year on two occasions (in 2005-2006 and then again in 2009-2010) and in 2008 was promoted from a Lecturer to a Senior Lecturer. In addition to teaching and serving as the Internship Coordinator where he supervises senior interns each semester, he has remained active as a member of several College and University Committees, including the UF Alumni Association Board of Directors, Title IX, Professional Sports Panel and the UAA Certification Committee. He also has written two books: Softball Everyone and 21st Century Dad. Beyond the campus, DeMichele is very active in the community as a youth coach and church volunteer.

Research Interests

  • The construction/renovation and development of commercial, private and public recreation and athletic facilities
  • The approaches to facility design necessary to meet the needs and interests of casual and serious participants, elite athletes and spectators
  • Leadership and administration, and how leaders in the professions of Tourism, Recreation and Sport Management create opportunities for personal growth and professional advancement

Courses

  • PET 3203 Principles of Coaching
  • SPM 3306 Sport Marketing
  • LEI 3400 Recreation Programming and Leadership
  • LEI 3921 Field Experience (Traditional & Online)
  • SPM 4104 Sport Facility Design and Management (Traditional & Online)
  • LEI 4311 Special Events and Meeting Planning
  • LEI 4540 Management and Supervision of Facilities
  • LEI 4570 Revenue Resource Management
  • PET 5466 Sport Marketing
  • LEI 6495 Campus Recreation Administration and Programming
Kyriaki Kaplanidou

Ph.D. in Park, Recreation, and Tourism Resources, Michigan State University (2006)
M.S. in Recreation Management, Loughborough University, Loughborough, England (2000)
B.S. in Physical Education and Sports Science, Aristotle University, Thessaloniki, Greece (1996)

Office: FLG 190A
Address: P.O. Box 118208, Gainesville, FL 32611-8208
Contact: (352) 294-1668
Email: kkaplanidou@hhp.ufl.edu

Biography

Kiki Kaplanidou is an Associate Professor at the University of Florida, Department of Sport Management and an affiliate faculty member of the Eric Friedheim Tourism Institute at the University of Florida. She holds her Ph.D. from Michigan State University. Her main research interests evolve around mega and small scale sport event image perceptions, sport event consumer behaviors, sport events’ impacts on community development via legacy management programs and interactions between event image, destination image and event sponsors’ images. Dr. Kaplanidou has conducted research for the International Olympic Committee related to the legacy of the Olympic Games and a number of sport related organizations.

She is a member of the North American Society of Sport Management, European Association for Sport Management, Greek Association for Sport Management and the Travel and Tourism Research Association. Dr. Kaplanidou has numerous presentations in national and international conferences related to the topic of sport consumer behaviors, sport tourism and mega event impacts. Her work is published in journals such as Journal of Sport Management, European Sport Management Quarterly, Sport Management Review, Journal of Sport & Tourism, Journal of Travel Research, Journal of Leisure Research, Journal of Hospitality and Tourism Research and Leisure Sciences.

Research Interests

  • Sport consumer behavior
  • Image of sport and sport events and their fit with destination and sponsor images
  • National and international communities’ development through mega sport event initiatives

Courses

  • SPM3306 Sport Marketing
  • SPM5309 Sport Marketing
  • SPM 6308 Sport Consumer Behavior
  • HLP 6515 Evaluation Procedures in Health and Human Performance
  • HFT6747 Marketing in Hospitality and Tourism
  • PET 6476 Management and Leadership in Sport
Yong Jae Ko

Ph.D. in Sport Management, Ohio State University (2000)
M.A. in Physical Education, Ohio State University (1996)
B.A. in Physical Education, Seoul National University (1991)

Office: FLG 186A
Address: P.O. Box 118208, Gainesville, FL 32611-8208
Contact: (352) 294-1665
Email: yongko@hhp.ufl.edu

Biography

Dr. Yong Jae Ko is a Professor in the Department of Sport Management at the University of Florida.

His primary research interests are (a) service marketing and (b) sport consumer behavior. A particular research interest includes consumer socio-psychological constructs such as attitude, perception, and belief about sport organizations and their product brands, sport participation motivation/involvement, and commitment/identification of sport consumers. This line of research has been extended to a variety of segments in the sport industry such as sport sponsorship, college sport, sport e-business and martial arts. The overriding goal of this line of research is to develop an improved understanding of sport consumers’ decision-making processes and provide sport organizations with managerial implications. Ultimately, his scholarly efforts will help communities improve quality of life for individuals and families through sport participation, with the added benefit of also improving their psychological and physical health. Many of his studies have been published in peer-reviewed sport management and marketing journals (e.g., Journal of Sport Management, Sport Management Review, International Journal of Sports Marketing and Sponsorship, and Sport Marketing Quarterly). He also published his research outcomes in the relevant premier journals related to these lines of research (e.g., Journal of Marketing Management, Journal of Business and Industrial Marketing, Asia Pacific Journal of Marketing and Logistics, and Annals of Tourism Research).

Dr. Ko is a member of the Sport Marketing Association (SMA) and the North American Society for Sport Management (NASSM). His professional service has been excellent as he routinely serve on various committees and advisory board in national and international sport organizations.

Research Interests

  • Consumer behavior research focused on socio-psychological variables that influence sport consumption behavior
  • Service marketing research focused on consumers’ quality and value perceptions toward a variety of sport services
  • Sponsorship and sport branding

Courses

  • HLP 6535 Research Methods
  • SPM 5305 Sport Marketing
  • SPM 6036 Research in Sport Management
Joon Sung Lee

Ph.D. in Kinesiology, University of Michigan (2015)
M.A. in Sport Science, Seoul National University (2008)
B.S. in Physical Education, Seoul National University (2002)

Office: FLG 330E
Address: P.O. Box 118208, Gainesville, FL 32611-8208
Contact: (352) 294-1654
Email: joonsunglee@ufl.edu

Biography

Dr. Joon Sung Lee is an Assistant Professor with the Department of Sport Management at the University of Florida. His primary research encompasses topics surrounding corruption in the sport industry as a critical sociocultural issue. Focusing on athlete transgression, he has conducted a line of research investigating how sport consumers process an athlete endorser’s transgression information and respond to the troubled athlete in different ways. This line of research has been extended to a variety of topics in athlete endorsement domain.

His recent work has been published in top peer-reviewed business and sport journals (e.g., Journal of Business Ethics, Journal of Sport Management, Sport Marketing Quarterly, and so on). His work has also been quoted by media (e.g. Business Standard, Boston.com, etc.) to explain sport consumer’s multi- faceted responses to athlete transgression such as Deflategate and Tiger Woods scandal. In 2015, he was selected as a runner-up for the European Association for Sport Management Conference New Researcher Award and a winner of the Sport Marketing Association Conference Best Student Paper Award.

Research Interests

  • Sport Marketing
  • Sport Consumer Behavior
  • Sponsorship and Endorsement
  • Corruption in Sport
  • Sport Media Behavior

Courses

  • HLP 6535 Research Methods
  • SPM 3306 Sport Marketing
Brian Mills

Ph.D. in Kinesiology (Sport Management) from the University of Michigan (2012)
M.A. in Applied Economics from the University of Michigan (2012)
M.A. in Statistics from the University of Michigan (2011)
M.A. in Kinesiology (Sport Management) from the University of Michigan (2008)
B.A. in Psychology from St. Mary’s College of Maryland (2006)
Office: FLG 242A
Address: P.O. Box 118208, Gainesville, FL 32611-8208
Contact: (352) 294-1664
Email: bmmillsy@hhp.ufl.edu

Biography
Brian Mills, Ph.D., is an Assistant Professor with the Department of Sport Management at the University of Florida. His research interests encompass topics such as the sports labor market, industrial organization and sports league policy (demand, competitive balance, revenue sharing, etc.), public policy and economic development related to sport, and advanced analytics in the sports business. He is especially interested in applying economic lessons and quantitative analysis to problems that sport managers face in their everyday decision making.

His professional memberships include the North American Association of Sports Economists (NAASE), North American Society for Sport Management (NASSM), and the American Statistical Association (ASA) section in Sports Statistics. He has published in top field journals such as the Journal of Sport Management and Tourism Management, and has authored published or forthcoming articles in the Journal of Quantitative Analysis in Sports, Economic Inquiry, Managerial and Decision Economics, and the Journal of Sports Economics.

Dr. Mills has also worked on consulting projects for professional sports teams and municipalities both in the U.S. and Canada. These projects include economic development reports, evaluation of the impacts of pro franchise moves on incumbent counterparts, marketing analytics and programming for an NBA franchise, and viral marketing viability for a new sports website.

Research Interests

  • The sports labor market, league policy and industrial organization in sport
  • Economic impact and economic development related to sport
  • Consumer behavior and behavioral economics in the sport context
  • Data mining and advanced analytics for sports business

Courses

  • SPM 5506 – Sport Finance
Michael Sagas

Ed.D. in Sport Management, Texas A&M University (2001)
M.S. in Sport Management, Texas A&M University (1999)
B.S. in Exercise and Sport Science, University of Utah (1996)

Office: FLG 300
Address: P.O. Box 118208, Gainesville, FL 32611-8208
Contact: (352) 294-1640
Email: msagas@hhp.ufl.edu

Biography

Michael Sagas currently serves as Professor and Department Chair of the Department of Sport Management at the University of Florida. Dr. Sagas also serves the university as the Faculty Athletics Representative to the NCAA and SEC. Sagas received his masters and doctorate from Texas A&M University in sport management, where he also served as a faculty member prior to his arrival to UF in 2008.

Dr. Sagas’ primary line of inquiry in the field of sport management has been focused on the under-representation and differential treatment of youth, women and minorities in sports. The general goal of this research has been to provide theoretical and practical insights needed by scholars, policy makers, and managers to identify the barriers that limit the status, development, advancement and well-being of youth, women and racial minorities in sports. Sagas has authored or coauthored over 85 refereed journal articles and is a Research Fellow of the North American Society for Sport Management.

Research Interests

  • Discrimination in Sports
  • Intercollegiate Athletics
  • Diversity in Sports Organizations

Courses

  • SPM 2000 Introduction to Sport Management
  • SPM 5016 Sport Sociology
Svetlana Stepchenkova

Ph.D. in Hospitality and Tourism Management, Purdue University
M.S. in Hospitality and Tourism Management, Purdue University
B.S. in Applied Mathematics, Moscow State University

Office: FLG 312
Address: P.O. Box 118208, Gainesville, FL 32611-8208
Contact: (352) 294-1652
Email: svetlana.step@hhp.ufl.edu

Biography

Svetlana Stepchenkova, Ph.D., is an assistant professor at the Department of Tourism, Hospitality, and Event Management at the University of Florida. The area of her research interests is destination management, marketing, and branding, with the focus on quantitative assessment of destination image using qualitative data. She is especially interested in influence of media messages on image formation, and destination image as a factor in explaining destination choice. Svetlana also studies applications of information technologies in travel and tourism, particularly virtual travel communities, destination websites, and user-generated content as a means of obtaining a competitive advantage in destination marketing and management.

Currently Svetlana is leading a three-year international project “Capacity Building Partnership to Improve Tourism Education, Research, and Industry Outreach: University of Florida, USA and the State University of Nizhni Novgorod, Russian Federation” sponsored by the U.S. Department of Education.

Svetlana publishes her research in the Journal of Travel Research, Tourism Management, Journal of Hospitality Marketing & Management, as well as Cyber Psychology & Behavior and Computers in Human Behavior. In 2011 Svetlana joined the Editorial Review Board of Journal of Travel Research. She also serves as a reviewer for Tourism Management, Journal of Hospitality Marketing & Management, and Current Issues in Tourism.

Research Interests

  • Destination image as a competitive factor in destination management, marketing, and branding
  • Computer-assisted analysis of qualitative data. Methodologies for statistical analysis of textual and pictorial data
  • Effects of media messages and user-generated content on tourism behavior and destination demand
  • Websites and online communities as a marketing tool for Destination Marketing Organizations
  • Cultural issues in tourism research

Courses

  • LEI 3836 Hospitality Management
  • HLP 6515 Evaluation Procedures
  • HLP 6535 Research Methods
Cyntrice Thomas

Ph.D. in Kinesiology, University of Georgia (2012)
J.D., Tulane University (2004)
B.S. in Political Science; International Affairs, Florida State University (2001)

Office: FLG 312
Address: P.O. Box 118208, Gainesville, FL 32611-8208
Contact: (352) 294-1669
Email: cthomas10@ufl.edu

Biography

Cyntrice Thomas is a lecturer in the Department of Sport Management. Prior to coming to UF, she was a professor of Sport Business at Jacksonville University in Jacksonville, FL.

She is a graduate of Florida State University and she holds a Juris Doctor from Tulane University as well. She is a licensed attorney in the District of Columbia and state of Virginia. After practicing law for a few years she pursued her PhD in Kinesiology from the University of Georgia.

Research Interests

  • Legal aspects of sports
  • The application of antitrust law in sports
  • Collective bargaining and labor issues in sports
  • Social issues in sports

Courses

  • SPM 2000 Introduction to Sport Management Entrepreneurship in Tourism, Recreation & Sport Management
  • SPM 4723 Legal Issues in Sport and Physical Activity
  • SPM 6726 Issues in Sport Law
Christine Wegner

Ph.D. in Business Administration, Temple University (2016)
M.A. in Education, Brooklyn College (2005)
B.S. in Latin, Vassar College (2003)

Office: FLG 304
Address: P.O. Box 118208, Gainesville, FL 32611-8208
Contact: (352) 294-2821
Email: christinewegner@ufl.edu

Biography

Christine Wegner, Ph.D. is an Assistant Professor with the Department of Sport Management at the University of Florida. Her research interests include sport for social change and marginalized populations in sport, particularly the role of organizations and organizing in the formation of identities in and through sport. She has also worked with several local and national non-profit sport organizations, providing program and membership evaluations as a means of strategic programming and fundraising. Dr. Wegner has published in the Journal of Sport Management, the Journal of Leisure Research, and the Journal of Applied Sport Psychology. She is a member of the North American Society for Sport Management (NASSM).

Research Interests

  • Organizational and Social Identities
  • Sport for Social Change

Courses

  • SPM 6036 Research Sport Management
  • SPM 6158 Management/Leadership
Cynthia Willming

Ph.D. in Health and Human Performance, Specialization in Tourism, Minor in Sociology, University of Florida (2001)
M.S. in Recreational Studies, University of Florida (1994)
B.S. in Recreation, University of Florida (1993)

Office: FLG 308
Address: P.O. Box 118208, Gainesville, FL 32611-8208
Contact: (352) 294-1662
Email: willming@hhp.ufl.edu

Biography

Cynthia Willming, Ph.D., joined UF in 2009 as an Adjunct Faculty Member. Willming came to UF from Bethune Cookman College where she was chair of the Recreation Administration Program. Willming was also an assistant professor of Marketing and Leisure Service Delivery at California State University, Chico.

Willming’s area of research in tourism studies focused on the leisure travel behaviors of African Americans and their perceptions of racial discrimination while traveling for pleasure. The focus of this research has been to examine perceived racial discrimination based on sociological factors.

Research Interests

  • Event Management
  • Perceived Racial Discrimination and Leisure Travel
  • Race and Leisure Travel

Courses

  • HFT 2750 Event Management
  • HFT 3512 Event Promotion
  • HFT 4517 Convention Sales & Services
  • HFT 4754 Advanced Event Management

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