LOS ANGELES (March 21, 2023) – The Los Angeles Sparks announced today that they have hired long-time sports industry executive Ilene Hauser as the team’s Vice President of Basketball Operations and Player Relations.
Hauser is the latest addition to the new era of Los Angeles Sparks basketball that began with the hiring of GM & CAO Karen Bryant and Head Coach Curt Miller. Hauser’s primary responsibilities will include oversight of all operational matters for the team including travel, team facilities, player housing team scheduling, among other responsibilities. In addition to the operational aspects of her position, she will work with Bryant on off court player initiatives.
“Two focus areas for us this off-season have been our overall operating effectiveness and the Sparks player experience,” said Bryant. “Ilene is uniquely qualified to lead these areas for us given her 20 plus years in women’s basketball, with most of those years spent specifically on the pro level. Her experience, leadership, reputation, and passion for the game bring tremendous value to the Sparks.”
Hauser currently serves as the Director of Sport, Basketball at Athletes Unlimited where her duties include working with all business verticals to elevate Athletes Unlimited basketball. She works directly with Basketball Player Executive Committee and leadership and serves as liaison between AU Basketball and the women’s basketball community.
“I couldn’t be more elated to join the Los Angeles Sparks in this role and be a part of the legacy that has been built over the past 26 years,” said Hauser. “Growing up in Los Angeles, I am excited to now play a part in continuing to grow women’s professional basketball in my hometown with such quality people.”
Prior to her time at Athletes Unlimited, Hauser spent 15 years as the Manager of Women’s Basketball Marketing at Nike. There she negotiated contracts and managed relationships with some of the world’s most elite athletes in the WNBA while building brand awareness for Nike, the athlete and women’s sports in general. Additionally, this will be her second stint working for a WNBA team, after she spent nearly eight years with the Phoenix Mercury with roles in scouting, basketball operations and as the head of the Community Relations department.
ABOUT THE LOS ANGELES SPARKS
Founded in 1996, the Los Angeles Sparks are one of three original franchises in the Women’s National Basketball Association (WNBA). The Sparks have won three WNBA Championships (2001, 2002, 2016), have qualified for the playoffs in 20 of their 26 seasons and remain the only active team in the league to win back-to-back titles. The Los Angeles Sparks are dedicated to ensuring each home game at Crypto.com Arena has a championship level entertainment experience while showcasing the best female athletes from around the world on the court. LA Sparks 2023 season tickets are available here for purchase.