When Women In Flight collaborated with Nike and the Jordan Brand team to create the exclusive WIF Title IX Jordan 1 Mids, the sneaker became a symbol of celebrating Title IX and women’s athletics in a way that no other institution had done before. With only two pairs in existence, the opportunity to create buzz and raise funds was both exciting and formidable. As the shoes were in production, Women In Flight turned to another one of our partners for ideas on how to best utilize the shoes to achieve our goals and accelerate the Women In Flight mission.
Graduate students pursuing their MBA specialized in Sports Business with the UO Warsaw Sports Marketing Center came to the rescue. Students formed small teams and brainstormed how to use the exclusive shoes to raise funds for the Go Do Anything campaign and spread awareness about Women In Flight.
Teams pitched their ideas in a Shark Tank style presentation to members of the University of Oregon Athletic Department, including Rob Mullens (Athletic Director), H.J. Cohn (Senior Associate Athletic Director of Development), Alexis Cross (Director of Women In Flight), and Justin Fisher (Associate Athletic Director of Development, Portland). Presentations ranged from creating non-fungible tokens (NFTs) to hosting head-to-head fundraising competitions, generating a $9-entry raffle, holding a live or virtual auction, and more.
The session was moderated by Makenzie Fancher, current Warsaw student who currently works with Women In Flight thanks to a special donation by Dave and Nancy Petrone. Their gift established an annual paid internship for one Sports Business MBA student to work with WIF, a mutually-beneficial opportunity for both organizations.
Women In Flight proceeded with hosting a virtual auction for the first pair, which sold for $10,100 to Ellen Schmidt-Devlin, a former Oregon track and field student-athlete and founder of the UO Sports Product Management program in Portland. Ellen, who worked under Bill Bowerman at Nike after graduating from UO, understands these particular shoes hold meaning. Everything about the shoes, from the colorways to the Title IX logo created by Tinker Hatfield to the wooden box designed by female designers and engraved with the “Go Do Anything” mantra, represents the special anniversary and the triumphs of women everywhere.
HOW TO WIN THE SECOND PAIR
Only one pair of the Title IX Jordan 1 Mids remains, and anyone can be the lucky winner. The second and last pair will be released via giveaway to a member of the Women In Flight community. Warsaw students who first suggested the idea felt that giving anyone the opportunity to win was an important element to our campaign, which aims to celebrate the success of women everywhere. Individuals are encouraged to enter by making a donation of any size, following @UOWomenInFlight on social media, attending Women In Flight events and more.
SUPPORT PARTNERSHIPS LIKE THESE
Partnerships like these allow Women In Flight to reach its full potential. As the next generation of leaders in the sports industry, students in the Warsaw Sports Marketing Center are already making an impact on women’s athletics at the University of Oregon and beyond. Thanks to this established partnership, we’re excited for the endless opportunities to continue collaborating on ways to enhance the female student-athlete experience here at Oregon.