Executive Director David Raith
David Raith is responsible for the day-to-day management of U.S. Figure Skating. He oversees an operating budget of approximately $12 million annually while managing the policies, programs and goals of the association as approved by the Board of Directors.
Since his hiring as executive director of U.S. Figure Skating in September 2005, Raith has taken numerous steps toward strengthening the organization now and for the future.
Raith spearheaded the signing of a long-term relationship with NBC to broadcast the U.S. Championships and Skate America beginning in the 2007-08 season. The deal has now been extended and ensures that figure skating will remain on network television and in primetime for selected events through the 2014 Olympic season. The partnership includes a minimum of 11 hours of event coverage (nine hours live) and various marketing and broadband rights, highlighted by additional live event coverage on U.S. Figure Skating's icenetwork.com and NBCSports.com.
In 2006 Raith played an integral role in establishing U.S. Figure Skating's partnership with Major League Baseball Advanced Media, LP, to develop and utilize the interactive media properties of U.S. Figure Skating through the creation of icenetwork.com. Icenetwork.com is a wholly owned subsidiary of U.S. Figure Skating and has the exclusive rights to U.S. Figure Skating's interactive media properties.
Raith also was one of the driving forces behind the multi-year, exclusive agreement U.S. Figure Skating signed with Van Wagner Sports and Entertainment, a New York-based sponsorship and media sales agency, in March 2008. This allows U.S. Figure Skating and Van Wagner to build 360-degree integrated packages that provide complete solutions to partners, while enabling U.S. Figure Skating to provide support to its athletes and to continue to grow the sport of figure skating.
Raith has made a number of hires and reorganized the office at U.S. Figure Skating Headquarters to strengthen the infrastructure of the organization. These additions include a senior director of athlete high performance, to increase the success of U.S. Figure Skating athletes and a senior director of membership, to support the organization's clubs and grow its membership.
Raith has extensive background in the television industry, marketing and Olympic arena that includes involvement with USA Track & Field, Turner Broadcasting's Goodwill Games and CNN Sports.
Prior to joining U.S. Figure Skating, Raith worked at USA Track & Field as director of events and broadcasting from 2003-05, overseeing all major events, including the 2004 Olympic Track & Field Trials, USA Indoor and Outdoor Track & Field Championships, and USA Track & Field's Visa Championship Series. These events generated more than 15 national broadcasts on NBC and other networks.
Before his time at USA Track & Field, Raith served as the vice president of sports for Turner Broadcasting System's Goodwill Games, the international, multi-sport competition organized from 1986-2001. He was responsible for event and television scheduling, athlete participation, and operational aspects of up to 24 different sports. With figure skating alone he worked extensively with athletes, coaches, judges and volunteer leadership.
While at Turner, Raith also led the organization of the ISU-sanctioned competition "Centennial on Ice" in February 1996 in St. Petersburg, Russia, commemorating the 100th anniversary of the first World Figure Skating Championships staged in the city in 1896. He also oversaw the professional figure skating event organized as part of the Winter Goodwill Games in Lake Placid, N.Y., in 2000.
Raith's considerable television background also includes five years at the Cable News Network (CNN) beginning with its inception in 1980. From 1980-85 he helped establish CNN Sports as an anchor, coordinating producer, "Sports Tonight" producer and producer of "The Games of '84," daily coverage leading up to and during the 1984 Olympic Winter and Summer Games.
A St. Louis native, Raith is a graduate of the University of Missouri with a degree in journalism. He and his wife, Leslie, have two daughters, Sydney and Jaime.