Former Marlins GM Kim Ng hired as senior adviser for Athletes Unlimited Softball League

Kim Ng made her mark as a trailblazer in the male-dominated world of Major League Baseball.

In 2020, the Miami Marlins made her the first female general manager in the four major North American professional sports leagues. She kept the position for three seasons and the Marlins reached the playoffs her final year.

Now Ng, who played softball at the University of Chicago, will use her skills to directly uplift women’s sports. She’s been hired as a senior adviser for the Athletes Unlimited Softball League, which will launch in 2025.

With women’s sports riding a wave of momentum, Ng felt this was the right time to jump in.

“We’re in a moment here,” she said. “And maybe it’s not a moment. Maybe it’s more of a movement. I just wanted to be a part of it.”

Ng spent a combined 21 years in the front offices of the Chicago White Sox, New York Yankees and Los Angeles Dodgers, and she has three World Series rings. Before joining the Marlins, she spent nine years as a senior vice president for Major League Baseball.

She’ll work closely with Athletes Unlimited CEO and co-founder Jon Patricof and senior vice president and director of softball Cheri Kempf. They want to provide more options for players while creating a strong domestic presence in the sport during the ramp-up for the 2028 Los Angeles Olympics.

“Kim is one of the most accomplished executives in professional sports,” Patricof said. “She brings a long track record, both working at the league level and at the team level. She has a mix of incredibly strong strategic skills as well as understanding the ins and outs of how to run a pro sports operation. So, we’re incredibly excited to have her join.”

Patricof said the league will start with four teams that will tour in up to eight cities, including Wichita and Chicago, before becoming city based in 2026. Those cities have not been determined yet. ESPN is on board as a founding broadcast partner.

The 55-year-old Ng is the oldest of three sisters who played college softball. That makes this endeavor personal for her.

“It’s always been really important that women get this type of stage and are given the opportunities as well,” she said. “For me, in this different point of my career, I think being able to support these women in a different way than I had in my career previously is just such a thrill.”

Ng said she met with Athletes Unlimited co-founders Patricof and Jonathan Soros in 2019, before the company launched the next year. She came away impressed with their creativity and vision for women’s sports.

She watched as the company stabilized over time. The league just finished its shorter AUX schedule for the third time, and Athletes Unlimited softball will start its fifth individual championship season this summer.

Now she’ll lead Athletes Unlimited’s traditional team entity, which will replace AUX. The new league will start with a touring model in 2025 and become city-based in 2026.

Ng wants help build a strong domestic pro softball league ahead of the 2028 Summer Olympics.

“For me, it’s just so incredibly meaningful to have a chance to help shape and mold what the game is going to look like and the ways that we’re going to be able to provide it and present it to future softball fans and the future softball players, to future female athletes young girls,” she said. “That’s all part of this.”


Copyright © 2024 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, written or redistributed.

Federal News Network Logo
Log in to your WTOP account for notifications and alerts customized for you.

Sign up