Senior Director of Ticket Operations
Cleveland Cavaliers and Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse
Some people find ticketing success jumping from one job to the next. Bayley Haberman climbed the ladder.
The senior director of ticket operations for the Cleveland Cavaliers set her sights on the organization while still in college. Haberman was hired in 2010 as a part-time ticket sales representative and rose through the ranks as senior ticketing operations representative, ticketing operations manager, senior manager of ticketing operations and director of ticketing operations.
“Bayley is easily the best hire I have ever made and continues to grow in her role and impact on the organization,” said Ron Velazquez, vice president of ticketing operations for the Cleveland Cavaliers. “I am very proud that I have been a small part of her incredible journey.”
Haberman started her career as an intern in the ticketing office at the University of Wisconsin after graduating from Ohio University with a degree in sports management. While there, one of her duties was managing the rowdiest student gate at Camp Randall Stadium, where she acquired “thick skin.”
“I was one of three box office interns at the time,” Haberman recalled. “Working in the Big 10 you see a different side of athletics and I knew I wanted to get into live entertainment. I think they were very aware that this wasn’t going to be my end-all, be-all. This was a stepping stone, a growing point for me to kickstart a career in this industry.” After reaching out to Velazquez, Haberman stayed in touch. During a holiday break, he invited her to see an NBA game at Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse, which opened in 1994 with a capacity of nearly 19,500.
“I came into the building and he told me about what his vision for a ticketing operation team would be,” said Haberman, who grew up in Columbus, Ohio. “At that time, he had a box office staff and one other person.”
The impression Haberman made as an undergrad paid off. When Velazquez got approval for a part-time position, he called.
“Bayley remained in contact with us, even though we did not have a role for her at the time,” Velazquez recalled. “Every conversation was energetic and engaging. Bayley was inquisitive, always asking questions regarding our operations and what challenges we were dealing with. I knew that if I had the opportunity to hire her, she would have a positive impact on the team.”
When she started, the Cavaliers were printing and mailing paper tickets. Today, the Cavaliers and AHL Monsters are fully digital and members are engaged year-round, including events in the offseason.
“I didn’t get to where I am right now without the guidance and mentorship of a whole bunch of people here at the Cavs who have supported me over the years,” Haberman said. “It’s a great relationship and I can’t imagine working for anybody else.”
The advice she gives aspiring ticketing professionals is to advocate for yourself.
“I made that a point early on in my career that I was looking out for my best interests as well as the organization’s,” she said.
A “people person,” Haberman also makes it a point to know the faces and names of the people she works with.
“It’s kind of a revolving door industry sometimes, so I feel like a dinosaur when I look around and it’s been 14 years,” she said. “But I think the reason you stay is the people.
“I’ve been super grateful and fortunate to work with some incredible professionals in this industry.”