After repeated calls for more transparency, the NWHL has announced they will be publicly sharing stories of its partners over the coming season. The first partner profiled is Texas Rangers co-owner and COO Neil Leibman.
“I believe in the future of women’s professional sports,” Leibman shared in the league’s press release. “I decided to get involved in the NWHL because of the people – starting with the world-class athletes and great role models across our teams, and also my partners that share my faith in the league and its goals, along with the leaders of the league like Dani Rylan and [Deputy Commissioner] Hayley Moore.”
Along with being Rangers’ COO, Leibman sits on several committees including the Texas Rangers Baseball Foundation and Major League Baseball’s Diversity and International Committees. He helped the Rangers transfer and purchase the Down East Wood Ducks, as well as the Hickory Crawdads (both Rangers’ minor league affiliates). His reach in minor league baseball extends to being the CEO of two organizations, the president of Hickory Baseball Inc., and the Co-Managing partner of the Mobile Bay Bears. Leibman is the creator of Infinite Esports & Entertainment, owner of OpTic Gaming.
Leibman graduated with a BA from Emory University before getting his MBA and Law Degree at SUNY School of Law and Business. After working for Exxon, he founded Houston based energy provider GEXA. He sold GEXA and joined Aspen Pipeline I & II as Chairman & CEO. Currently, Leibman is CEO of Summer Energy Inc., which he also founded.
“For me, the NWHL is a legacy investment. I’m looking long-term. I want to see the NWHL on par some day with the NHL. That’s what drives all of us, and I’m confident it will happen.” - Neil Leibman
Per the announcement, Leibman is “an active investor who is available to share my experience whenever it is needed.” As for what he expects for the league, “With Minnesota joining the league, this is going to be another great season and step forward for us. In the near future, I can see us expanding from the current five to eight teams in the next five years. Short-term, on a personal level, I want to get out to a few games this season. The NWHL players are incredible, and I want to take the time to see them in action. I have so much respect for everything they mean to our league, the sport and the people watching.”