The Cape Elizabeth native, Daniel Gacetta, Jr., is this year's recipient of the MSHF President's Award for his contributions to the marketing, representation, and recognition of athletes at the 2002 Winter Olympic Games in Salt Lake City, Utah. Athletes included: Gold Medalist snowboarders Kelly Clark and Ross Powers, Silver Medalist Danny Krass, and Bronze Medalist Chris Klug. As an athlete representative with Octagon, he represented 10 Olympic athletes in all. Soon after the medals were won, Sports Illustrated and The Wall Street Journal started ringing Gacetta's cell phone. Within ten hours, he had already received calls from potential automotive, beverage, and cereal sponsors.
He graduated from Cheverus High School and participated in varsity soccer, basketball, and baseball. At Syracuse University he earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Advertising from S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications and Marketing from Crouse-Hineds School of Management. Dan earned his MBA degree from Fordham University.
Formerly with Young and Rubicam, he bacame a Management Supervisor with eight years of service. More recently, he joined Carlisle Sports Management (CSM), an athlete representation and marketing firm based in Portland. He managed its business operations in the New York City Metro area.
Octagon, part of The Interpublic Group (NYSE: IPG), is the world's largest advertising and marketing communications group. The Interpublic Group is the only marketing communications and services group with a global sports marketing capability. Octagon employs over 1,500 people in 23 countries, on all major continents.
Gacetta is not alone in his efforts. While he operates out of his New York office, his division headquarters are in Portland, which is headed up by another Cape Elizabeth native, Peter Carlisle. Peter is the former president of CSM and current North East director for Octagon. Some of the most famous celebrities they have worked with are boxer Sugar Ray Leonard, singer Clint Black, actors Anthony Edwards and George C. Scott, and the most famous letter turner, Vana White. Dan has also worked on AT&T campaings using New York Yankeess manager Joe Torre and bench coach Don Zimmer.
Gacetta and his wife Cindy, a native New Yorker who attended Colby College in Waterville, live in Norwalk, Connecticut with their 2 1/2-year-old son Gareth. Dan, Jr. claims all of his sports marketing talent came from his dad. "It just might be a family thing," says Dan, Jr., whose son is already showing interest in athletics.
Dan has had a deep interest for sports marketing for a long time. The 36-year-old Gacetta first got the bug at the 1980 Winter Olympics in Lake Placis, New York, where Dan, Sr. was Maine's representative for the U.S. Olympic Committee and took his 14-year-old son along with him.
Maine Sports Hall of Fame
P.O. Box 2
Cumberland, ME 04021
Phone (207) 807-7666
The Maine Sports Hall of Fame was established in 1972 for the purpose of: 1) appointing and bestowing recognition awards and scholarships to outstanding Maine high school scholar-athletes; and, 2) to formally honor and memorialize Maine athletes and sports figures who have brought distinction and honor to the state of Maine.