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Jaguars praise Macky Weaver upon resignation

Posted Feb 12, 2013

Team announces executive promotions, hiring of Megha Parekh as VP and General Counsel

Macky Weaver, a charter member of the Jacksonville Jaguars’ front office, today announced his resignation from the team after 19 years of distinguished service and will leave the organization later this month to explore other career opportunities.

The Jaguars announced Weaver’s resignation to team staff today along with the following appointments:

• Hussain Naqi has been promoted to Senior Vice President of Fan Engagement, effective immediately.

• Chad Johnson has been promoted to Senior Vice President of Ticket Sales, effective immediately.

• Megha Parekh will join the organization on March 1 as Vice President and General Counsel. Parekh is currently an associate at Proskauer Rose LLP in New York.

Weaver held the title of senior vice president of sales since 2010 and has served the Jaguars in a variety of marketing roles since joining the franchise in 1994 under original owner Wayne Weaver.

“Macky Weaver is one of a handful of people who can say they helped put the Jaguars on the map here in

Jacksonville, and he should always be very proud of that,” Jaguars owner Shad Khan said. “I’ll always appreciate his personal efforts to introduce me to the community and make me feel at home as the new owner of the Jaguars.”

“I would like to thank Wayne and Shad for giving me the opportunity they have given me over the past 19 years,” Weaver said. “I am proud of the people I worked with and what we were able to accomplish, especially the past three years of having all home games televised. Finally, I will always be the biggest Jaguars supporter as I understand what the Jaguars mean to Jacksonville. I will continue to make sure our community doesn’t lose sight of that importance.”

Weaver will act as a senior advisor to Jaguars president Mark Lamping in 2013.

“Macky’s contributions to the Jaguars will be lasting and I am happy that I will be able to call on him in the future,” Lamping said. “Macky will be a success in the next stage of his career and we thank him for all he did for the Jaguars and our community. Everyone in the Jaguars family wishes Macky and his family the very best. Macky leaves the Jaguars as a friend.”

Highlights on the appointments of Naqi, Johnson and Parekh include:

Hussain Naqi

Naqi will assume additional responsibility in his new capacity including consumer research, regional marketing, advertising, competitive/industry monitoring and oversight of the new logo and branding rollout.

Naqi was named the Jaguars’ senior vice president, fan experience, on May 14, 2012. He arrived in Jacksonville following four years with New Meadowlands Stadium Company in East Rutherford, N.J., where he served as Vice President of Business Planning and General Counsel at MetLife Stadium, the home of the New York Jets and New York Giants.

In his current capacity as the head of fan experience for the Jaguars, Naqi oversees the Jaguars’ game day experience, including its game day lines of business, game presentation, fan engagement activities, guest service and security. With the Jaguars committing to play one home game in each of the next four years at Wembley Stadium in London, Naqi has also been tasked with overseeing the Jaguars’ fan development and marketing efforts in the UK.

Naqi began his career in the sports industry in 1997 with the law firm of Covington and Burling in Washington, D.C., which led to a four-year stint with the National Football League, working in the league’s Management Council. After leaving the NFL in 2002, Naqi was named Assistant Director of Enforcement for the NCAA.

Naqi attended Cornell University, earning his bachelor’s degree in Industrial and Labor Relations in 1997. In 2003, Naqi returned to school to complete a joint Juris Doctor and Masters of Business Administration degree at Northwestern University. While at Northwestern’s Kellogg School of Management, he developed a continuing education program for current and former NFL players to provide them with business skills during and after their playing careers. Upon graduation, Naqi joined the Executive Development Program with Major League Baseball and the New York Mets, serving two years in that capacity.

Chad Johnson

Johnson joined the Jaguars as vice president of ticket sales in May 2012. In his expanded role, Johnson will be responsible for sales in all ticketing areas, including suites, premium seating, season tickets, and group and single game tickets, as well as the service and ticket operations portion of the business.

Johnson has an impressive resume in Florida professional sports. Prior to joining the Jaguars, Johnson was

Senior Director of New Ballpark Sales for the Miami Marlins from 2010-2012; Senior Vice President of Sales and Marketing for Sunrise Sports and Entertainment’s Florida Panthers Hockey Club and BankAtlantic Center from 2003-2010, and served the Tampa Bay Lightning as Senior Director of Sales from 1999-2003.

Johnson earned a bachelor of arts degree from Augustana College in Rock Island, Ill., where he played NCAA Division III football.

Megha Parekh

Parekh started at Proskauer in November 2009 as part of the firm’s sports group, which represents the National Football League, National Hockey League, Major League Soccer, the National Basketball Association and Major League Baseball, and has also represented the ATP and WTA tours, the New York Yankees, Philadelphia Eagles and the New York Jets, among many other sports and related entities. While at Proskauer, Parekh also worked on a variety of matters, including public and private company acquisitions, and equity and debt financings.

Parekh was named in December 2012 to Forbes Magazine’s 30 Under 30 Sports List, which honored the country’s top sports athletes and executives under the age of 30 who “represent the entrepreneurial, creative and intellectual best of their generation.” Parekh is the only lawyer in private practice recognized by the Forbes list, which also included U.S. Olympic gold medalist Gabrielle Douglas, Pittsburgh Penguins center Sidney Crosby, Washington Redskins quarterback Robert Griffin III and Miami Heat forward LeBron James.

Ms. Parekh was recognized for her work on two major sports M&A transactions: representing Jimmy Haslam, chairman of Pilot Flying J, and certain members of his family in connection with the purchase of the Cleveland Browns football franchise and advising Crane Capital Group in the purchase of the Houston Astros baseball team.

Ms. Parekh joined Proskauer in 2009 after graduating magna cum laude from Harvard Law School and Harvard College, where she was a sports writer for The Harvard Crimson and served as an intern for baseball’s Boston Red Sox.

Parekh serves on the board of directors of Women in Sports and Events.

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