By Julie Jacobson

The Conexx Young Professionals group is well on its way to providing one of the best networking and peer experiences for young professionals in Atlanta and the southeast. The group’s most recent event featured Atlanta Hawks CEO Steve Koonin and also included Shaul Avidov, founder of Musketeer. With nearly 100 people in attendance, the event centered around the Hawks successful re-positioning and re-branding as the home team, at a time when 1 out of 5 NBA fans in Atlanta supported other teams.

(L-R) Ben Fink, Guy Tessler, Jordan Arogeti and Steve Koonin, CEO of the Atlanta Hawks.

(L-R) Ben Fink, Guy Tessler, Jordan Arogeti and Steve Koonin, CEO of the Atlanta Hawks.

This was the second quarterly event for the Conexx Young Professionals group and was a great success. Steve Koonin captivated the audience with an engaging and humorous presentation about using non-conventional marketing and outside-the-box thinking to position the Hawks as a team that attracts a “community” of fans. He gave the example of using innovative technologies to make the game a memorable performance, beyond the traditional game or incorporating unique and colorful uniforms, exciting half-time shows and much more.

Koonin shared his impressive career. How he transitioned from Coca-Cola to the Hawks and what the Hawks are doing to give back and support the local community in Atlanta – from building basketball courts in underprivileged neighborhoods to mentoring the kids in these neighborhoods and other initiatives. It was clear to everyone that Steve and the Hawks are strong believers in the concept of “Tikun Olam” or repairing the world, and that with great success, comes a greater responsibility of giving back to the community.