Today was my last day at AOL. It’s been a terrific 14-year run. I feel blessed and fortunate to have worked at such a great company. Yes, we’ve been taking heat from a lot of people over the past years, but I take great pride in being a part of the AOL family.
I’m leaving to launch my own relationship management agency — JLynn Associates, focused on Sports and Entertainment. A vast majority of time was spent in Business Development and Account Management for AOL’s numerous strategic sports partnerships, including the NFL, NBA, NASCAR, MLB, NHL, WNBA, Turner Sports, HBO Sports, Sports Illustrated, ABC Sports, WWF, PGA, Athlete Direct, STATS, SportsTicker, NTN, etc.
I feel like it’s now time to better leverage my sports rolodex — so after discussing this at length with my group of advisers and confidantes, it’s time to move on. Plus, I’ve worked at major media companies for nearly 20 years now — I’m interested in trying something new and different.
I have so many wonderful memories from my AOL days. Yes, I was fortunate to attend Super Bowls, World Series, NBA All-Star Games, NBA Finals, Olympics, World Cups, Stanley Cups, NASCAR races, etc. And, I very much enjoyed the past couple of years working on our Diversity and Inclusion efforts.
My key takeaway is the people I met — I was fortunate to work with so many terrific and talented people. I met one of my primary mentors in life at AOL — and I’ve mentored over 40 co-workers over the years. And, I’ve met many friends who are and will continue to be life-long friends. Also, a large number of former clients have also become very good friends.
My nickname, at various times, was the “Mayor” of the AOL campus and “Mayor” of the sports industry. Yes, I’m a people person. But, it’s because I was surrounded by so many terrific people at both AOL and within the sports industry.
Thus, I owe a deep debt of gratitude to AOL. I’m proud to be a 14-year veteran of AOL and will continue to be a member of the AOL family for life. I wish my colleagues there tremendous success. And, I look forward to connecting with and working with some of my former co-workers.
Thank you, AOL, you have made such a large, positive influence in my life. I would mention names of people that positively impacted me, but that list would be far too long and I wouldn’t want to leave anyone off the list.
It’s been a roller-coaster ride … from being the third-ranked online service provider when I joined … to acquiring the largest media company in the world a few years down the road … to the ups and downs over the past decade. But, it’s been well worth the ride … and I leave the campus today with enormous pride and joy. It’s all good. Peace.