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BizBash Sports Power Players 2023: Tor Southard

Tor Southard is the senior director of Adidas Soccer North America.

Tor

Tor Southard is the senior director of Adidas Soccer North America. He's based in Portland, Ore.

How I got here: "I played club soccer and college soccer. I wanted to stay in the soccer realm post-college and was lucky enough to live in the sporting goods mecca of Portland, Ore. I started at Adidas in soccer in the lowest-level role of product specialist 17 years ago and worked my way up from there."

Greatest career accomplishment: "Having the honor and opportunity to lead Adidas Soccer in North America during the most important time frame for soccer in the history of our country as we plan and execute a World Cup in North America." 

Something I wish I'd known at the start of my career: "Stop and celebrate the good times. A sports mentality can sometimes push you to always look ahead and focus on how to continuously improve as you move forward, but stopping and letting the good times sink in is just as important."

How I've seen fan experiences evolve: "Being a soccer fan in the U.S. is so different than when I grew up. The amount of content for fans is unprecedented. You can dive as deep as you like into a club. Additionally, the product on the field in MLS has increased so much in the last five, 10, 15 years. It’s great to be an MLS fan."

Favorite sports activity to do in my free time: "Play soccer, but I am recovering from a torn Achilles, so it looks more like recovery and physical therapy for now."

Favorite moment in sports history: "That’s an impossible question. When the U.S. wins the World Cup, that will become the answer. In the meantime, I would say watching Messi’s first MLS game live was pretty electric, especially doing that alongside so many teammates who put in such a phenomenal effort in getting his product here and marketing that moment."

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