Vice President of Business Operations,
Working for a sports team isn't all fun and games, but Craig Bommer, vice president of business operations for the Wheeling Nailers, has plenty of fun.
"I thought ... actually, a lot of people think if you work in sports you watch games all the time," Bommer said. "I work a lot. Don't get me wrong, it is fun, but it's not what I imagined."
Bommer, a Wheeling native, doesn't have a typical 9-to-5 job. The season spans seven months, and his position spans everything from fan interaction to corporate sponsorship. He says 90 percent of his job is selling tickets — something that gets tricky when trying to market weeknight games.
Bommer is going into his 11th hockey season, but he started his career with a degree in computer applications from West Liberty University.
After a few years at his first job, a friend who worked for the Nailers told Bommer about an opening. He tried it, loved it and moved his way up.
"It's always been a dream, but I can't say I thought it would happen," Bommer said.
His favorite thing is working with the corporate clients, who all care about the city and the team and have their own ideas. And there's the obvious perk: organized silliness.
"Being able to work on wacky promotions," Bommer said of his other favorite part of his job. "We have an hour every week when we meet with the staff and share all our ideas.
"The key in minor league sports is doing wacky things to get attention."
Bommer and his wife, Melissa, have two daughters: Addyson, age 6, and Avery, who was born in March. When he's not in the office, he coaches Addyson's softball team, and he gets outside to golf whenever possible.
The Nailers require staff members perform two community service projects every month, and Bommer says he volunteers with charities that work with the team, including Ohio Valley Medical Center's CORE initiative for organ donation, the Relay for Life and breast cancer awareness, among several other groups.