Executive Athletic Director
Bob Beretta is in his 14th year serving as a member of the Army Athletic Association's senior leadership team and 28th year overall in West Point's athletic department. Army's Executive Athletic Director, he is in his eighth year steering many of the athletic department's external operations ventures to include sport supervision, new facility and construction projects, licensing, strategic communications, multi-media, broadcasting, New Media and publicity efforts for Army's 28 intercollegiate athletic teams.
He also oversees maintenance of athletic department's strategic plan, while holding positions on the NCAA Hockey Rules Committee, Patriot League Sport Management Committee and Army-Navy Steering Committee, among others. He is in second year as chairman of the Atlantic Hockey Association Executive Committee and serves as West Point's lead contact with the New York Yankees, managing all aspects of that vital relationship. During his time leading Atlantic Hockey's Executive Committee, he was instrumental in the league outsourcing its multi-media rights for the first time in conference history, leading to a significant increase in corporate sponsorship revenue.
Personally responsible for leading four national coaching searches in the past 12 months, Beretta helped identify new coaches in the sports of football, baseball, wrestling and men's and women's track and field.
Previously, he oversaw the athletic department's fund-raising, donor relations, ticket sales and revenue generation initiatives. Those areas generated nearly $9 million annually through donations, ticket sales and online auctions. He was personally charged with synchronizing the entire External Operations department in order to align resources, maximize efficiencies and produce one cohesive unit. He also provided oversight to the athletic department's equipment and facility operations for two years.
Beretta currently maintains oversight of three of Army's five revenue-generating sports, to include football, hockey and women's basketball. He also retains sports supervision duties for Army's highly successful baseball program, the Academy's most decorated intercollegiate faction over the past decade. In all, he has directly supervised nine different athletic programs during his time at West Point, taking turns with lacrosse, men's soccer and men's and women's swimming and diving, in addition to his present sport administrative responsibilities.
The Newburgh, N.Y., native has handled football scheduling initiatives for West Point's Division I Independent Football Bowl Subdivision team since 2005. He developed a strategic plan that completely overhauled Army's previous scheduling philosophy for the current 12-year (2013-24) scheduling cycle to provide the Black Knights with their best possible chance for success. He serves as lead negotiator for all postseason bowl, television and neutral-site football contracts and has been the chairman of Army Sports Hall of Fame Selection Committee since its inception in 2004. In 2010, he was Army's lead contact and bowl trip organizer for the Black Knights' visit to the Bell Helicopter Armed Forces Bowl, charged with all operational and financial responsibilities.
Beretta recently concluded a highly successful six-year stretch as oversight authority for Army Sports Properties, Army's multi-media rights-holder, which is responsible for totaling more than $2 million in sponsorship revenue annually. Army Sports Properties increased the athletic department's sponsorship sales by 300 percent during Beretta's oversight tenure. He was also integral in the introduction and execution of the Team Army concept during the spring of 2012, a comprehensive plan designed to add significant value to Army's corporate sponsorships.
Beretta helped negotiate a new agreement with Learfield this summer that led to 300 percent growth in the rights fee to Academy. The veteran administrator also led negotiations for a new national television deal this fall that resulted in 130 percent growth in the annual financial guarantee to the Army Athletic Association.
Beretta assumed duties as the U.S. Military Academy's sports information director in April 1995 after serving for eight years as an assistant under longtime Army SID Bob Kinney. Beretta was named an assistant athletic director in 2000, the first SID to hold such a rank at West Point.
He was promoted to Associate Athletic Director for Athletic Communications in August 2003. Two years later, Beretta added the title of Senior Associate Athletic Director and expanded that role to Senior Associate Athletic Director for External Operations, Relationships and Branding in May of 2008. He was named Senior Executive Associate Athletic Director in July 2010, then was elevated to Executive Athletic Director in February 2012.
Beretta graduated magna cum laude from St. Bonaventure University in 1987 with a bachelor's degree in mass communication and was a four-time letterwinner on the Bonnies' baseball team. The three-time team captain earned St. Bonaventure's Varsity Letterman of the Year Award as a senior and was named to the Atlantic 10 Conference All-Academic honorable mention squad on two occasions. Three weeks following graduation, he began a six-month internship in Army's sports information department.
Beretta, who played a large role in bringing the New York Yankees to West Point for an exhibition game against Army's baseball team in March 2013, served as the primary lead on that highly successful event. He also served as Army's primary point of contact with the New York Yankees and Notre Dame for the teams' historic matchup at Yankee Stadium in November 2010 and played a large role in arranging that affair. Beretta was one of Army's chief negotiators for the school's agreement with the Yankees to play four future Black Knight home games in the legendary Bronx venue and has helped Army secure primary postseason football bowl tie-ins for the years 2010 through 2017. He also served as Army's primary point of contact for the Black Knights' first home game at the new Yankee Stadium against Rutgers in November 2011 and led all operations once again for Army's football "home" game against Connecticut in the Bronx in November 2014.
Additionally, Beretta serves as the school's day-to-day liaison with CBS Sports and CBS Sports Network. He leads sponsorship activities on Army's side for the Army-Navy football game and manages the Academy's key partnership with USAA.
Charged with content development and management for Army's official Web site and all New Media endeavors, Beretta was responsible for launching the Black Knights' burgeoning multi-media platform in 2007, which he now oversees. During the winter of 2012, Army became one of the nation's first intercollegiate athletic departments to introduce its own digital network. Shortly thereafter he was instrumental in helping to craft a multi-layered digital network strategy for the Patriot League.
Thanks to an aggressively scripted formula, Army ranks among the nation's leaders in multi-media content, building a comprehensive audio and video streaming package from the ground floor in just five short years. During that time, Army has provided live audio and/or video streaming coverage of more than 1,000 athletic events on its official Web site. He has presided over five Web site redesigns in the last decade and helped Army's site regularly rank among national leaders in monthly page views and unique visitors.
Under Beretta's direction, Army has become a leading force on the social media landscape, gaining a strong foothold on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram and YouTube, growing the pages annually by more than 25 percent. He also helped Army become one of the first athletic departments in the nation to introduce a comprehensive social media rewards program.
While leading all of Army's External Operations areas from May 2008 through May 2011, Beretta and his staff introduced premium seating for both basketball (courstide) and hockey (rinkside) and a new premium seating location for football. The courtside seating for basketball initiative resulted in Army nearly tripling the number of season tickets sold for the men's and women's programs. He also spearheaded the movement of the U.S. Corps of Cadets seating areas within Michie Stadium for home football games to maximize television exposure. The forward-thinking initiative required a carefully scripted plan to relocate more than 400 season ticket account-holders and resulted in a 95 percent retention rate among those impacted by the move.
Beretta was responsible for completely revamping Army's marketing efforts after assuming supervisory duties for the area in the spring of 2008. Among his initiatives, Beretta unveiled a thorough signage campaign that blanketed the tri-state region, introduced giveaways at all Army football home games, created a new fan-fest area, titled Black Knights Alley, which draws thousands of fans before each Army home game, introduced Michie Movie Night, viewing parties at Michie Stadium for Army away football games and implemented a Coaches Caravan outreach plan that placed members of Army's coaching staffs in the community. Army captured its first three National Association of Collegiate Marketing Administrators (NACMA) awards under Beretta's leadership in 2009, winning two first-place honors and a second-place accolade for outstanding achievement in marketing and promotions. The Black Knights added two more NACMA awards in 2010 and another the following year.
During that same period, Army was the focus of tremendous national attention. The Black Knights' External Operations areas were instrumental in supporting the CBS documentary, "Game of Honor," that chronicled the Black Knights' 2011 football season leading up to its annual showdown with arch-rival Navy. Not only was the two-hour program broadcast to a national audience on Showtime, but also won the Emmy Award for Best Sports Documentary. The Army football team was also the centerpiece for a behind-the-scenes book titled, "Soldiers First," written by New York Times best-selling author Joe Drape in 2011.
Adding to the busy year, Army's external areas were responsible for promoting the efforts of football standout Andrew Rodriguez, who became the first Army player to win the National Football Foundation's William V. Campbell Trophy, garnering the honor in December 2011. The Campbell Trophy is presented annually to the nation's top football scholar-athlete. Four months later, Rodriguez was honored with the Amateur Athletic Union's James E. Sullivan Award as the nation's top amateur athlete. He became the first Army player to receive the award since 1946 and was just the third player in history (Peyton Manning, Tim Tebow) to win both the Campbell Trophy and Sullivan Award. It marked the second Army athlete to reach finalist status for the AAU Sullivan Award in three years.
Beretta also restructured Army's ticket and development operations to better serve West Point in a changing economic environment while overseeing those areas. He developed the new Kimsey Club, identifying a source of revenue for the department while providing fans with an in-game hospitality option, and restructured the Athletic Director's Tailgate to form an interactive fan-friendly experience prior to home football contests. Army also introduced an ambitious online auction program under his watch, an endeavor that has yielded the department over $125,000 the past four years. On the development side, he was charged with managing a donor base that numbered approximately 4,000 that was responsible for approximately $3 million in gifts during the 2010 calendar year, a figure that represented a 10 percent increase from the previous year.
During the summer of 2013, he led a sweeping signage and branding facelift for historical Michie Stadium with the goals of upgrading the overall appearance and providing an enhanced fan experience for Army fans. The first phase of the project included the installation of 493 signs in and around Michie Stadium and was completed prior to the 2012 football season. The veteran administrator is currently managing the second phase of that project, which will include signage at all athletic facilities, as well as a massive renovation project in the Kenna Hall of Army Sports, the first for that marquee facility. He also led all operations for the Black Knights' first basketball jersey retirement initiative in January 2015, which spotlighted three former men's and three former women's standouts.
In the past three years, Beretta served on committees that helped negotiate a new apparel agreement with Nike, a new pouring rights contract with Coca-Cola, and an agreement with the Aspire Group to bolster ticket sales and better serve Army season ticket holders.
During his tenure in the athletic department, Beretta has played large roles in negotiating three national television agreements, including the Black Knights' current agreement with CBS Sports Network, the Army football team's series of games at Yankee Stadium and the presenting sponsor title rights to the Army-Navy football classic. He also played a vital role on the committee that selected the sites for future Army-Navy football games (2009-18) and has served on the Army-Navy Steering Committee throughout the last decade. He helped usher in the use of the first video board at venerable Michie Stadium in 2009 and Tate Rink in 2013, and was responsible for all programming, scripting and content for those boards.
He has also served on committees that have been responsible for drafting strategic plans for the intercollegiate athletic department on three different occasions and helped lead national searches to identify new Army head coaches in the sports of football, women's basketball, men's basketball, baseball, wrestling and track and field. Included among the coaches he has helped attract to West Point are Jeff Monken, Maggie Dixon, Dave Magarity, Zach Spiker, Joe Alberici, Kristen Waagbo, Mike Smith and Kevin Ward.
Beretta is a past president of the Eastern Collegiate Athletic Conference Sports Information Directors of America (ECAC-SIDA) and continues to serve on the organization's executive board in the role of Director of Charities. He has been a member of the executive board each of the past 14 years, and was presented with the ECAC-SIDA Irving T. Marsh Award in the spring of 2010 and the Pete Nevins Award for Distinguished Achievement in June 2014. As Charities Director, he and his committee have raised more than $50,000 for the organization's charitable efforts the past 12 years.
Beretta and his wife, Jennifer, live in Monroe, N.Y., with their daughter, Julia.