Ike Richman, formerly VP of PR, Comcast Spectacor; now founder of Richman Communications.
After nearly 29 years at Comcast Spectacor, Ike Richman, the company’s vice president, PR, is creating Ike Richman Communications to assist professional sports teams and owners, arenas and stadiums, concert promoters and family shows with generating PR content. Comcast Spectacor will become his first client.
“I joined Spectacor in 1989 on my 23rd birthday,” said Richman. At the time, Spectacor was owed by Ed Snider and they owned The Spectrum, Philadelphia Flyers of the National Hockey League and WIP sports radio station.”
In 1992, Richman moved to the Spectrum, the building that preceded Wells Fargo Center, as PR assistant. In 1996, Snider and Comcast merged to create Comcast Spectacor. Richman became VP in 2001.
Richman has been with the Flyers his whole life, literally. He is named in memory of his grandfather, Ike Richman, who founded the Philadelphia 76ers after relocating the Syracuse Nationals to Philadelphia in 1963.
“I was inspired by the words of Ed Snider, who I became very close with,” said Richman about branching out on his own. “Ed had this mantra: ‘take what you do well and grow it.’ I always thought I could make it go on own with my experience and resources and knowledge, and finally decided now’s the time.”
Richman’s firm, Richman Communications, isn’t starting out empty-handed. “When I told Dave Scott, Comcast Spectacor’s CEO, about my plans, not only did he wish me well; he also immediately said he wanted to be my first client. I’m very fortunate to have such a gracious employer.” Richman’s deal with Spectacor is multiyear. “The company can lean on my expertise,” said Richman.
Richman’s strength is media relations, public relations, community relations and crisis communications. “If you look back over my 30 years I’ve worked with Live Nation, AEG, concert promoters, hundreds of Feld Entertainment events, every type of sporting event you can mention, two Olympic trials, both Republican National Convention and Democratic National Convention events and I like to think I bring good insight to helping the field.”
Richman’s fans are many.
“Ike has been an integral member of the Comcast Spectacor team for more than 28 years,” said Scott. “His deep experience and contacts throughout the sports and entertainment industry have been invaluable to us as our business has grown and diversified. We are looking forward to working with him as an outside advisor in the years ahead.”
Frank Brown is the vice president of communications for the National Hockey League (NHL). “Ike really showed his professional stripes when Ed Snider passed away,” he said. “While there were so many details to track in preparing the celebration of Ed's life, and so many people to comfort, I thought Ike set aside his own grief and handled his duties impeccably.”
Peter Luukko, executive chairman, NHL’s Florida Panthers and chairman of OVG’s Arena Alliance, said, “It’s a great move for Ike at this time. He has a wealth of experience from the leagues, teams, food services companies, private management companies, broadcasting and many other facets of our business. In Ike’s case, he owes it to himself to do this. He’s made relationships over the years with many people who can use his services. He’s respected and well-liked.”
“One of the things Ike does very well is handle difficult situations,” he said. “There was a stolen car ring that went through town, and Ike handled this like a pro. Damage control is one of his many skills.”
Frank Miceli, SVP, sales & franchise business operations, Spurs Sports & Entertainment and AT&T Center, San Antonio, Texas, has known Richman for 30 years. “I used to work at Comcast and know Ike well,” he said. “He’s one of the best in business. He nurtures the team, the building, the band through exciting times and tumultuous times.”
“I think this a move that will be great for Ike and the industry,” he said. “This will give him a chance to spread his wings outside the Comcast Spectacor umbrella.”
Miceli recalled the time when Bruce Springsteen and his band requested use of the Flyers' locker room. “Typically, the locker room is off limits, but Ike intervened, worked his magic, and we agreed. The band was so appreciative we were invited to meet them before the show. It was great and we wound up inviting them to our ‘7:15 club’ early-morning hockey game.”
Geoff Gordon is president of Live Nation, Philadelphia. He’s known Richman for almost 30 years; they met when Gordon was with Electric Factory Concerts. “Ike is an ever-constant and a solid professional,” he said. “He’s efficient and a great asset.”
“I’m excited for his new venture,” he said. “I support him and think he will do very well on his own.”
Gordon recalled when Richman was instrumental in the success of the closing days of the Spectrum. “Ike arranged it so that major sports stars, Bernie Parent and Dave Schultz in particular, showed up at the concert. It was really cool to have them there and the band loved having them, too.”
Richman serves as an advisor to numerous nonprofit organizations, including the Ed Snider Youth Hockey Foundation, Police Athletic League, the Shirley Povich School of Sports Journalism and Philabundance. He handled all communications for the late Philadelphia Flyers owner Ed Snider prior to his passing in 2016.
Richman leaves his position Sept 28 and launches Richman Communications Oct. 3.
He can be reached at: Ike Richman@comcast.net.