Aeros introduce new owner Ken Babby
AKRON – With the 2012 Eastern League Championship title under their belt, the Akron Aeros are welcoming a new owner.
Ken Babby, owner of Fast Forward Sports Group, will replace former team owners Mike and Greg Agganis. The acquisition deal was finalized on Oct. 12, 2012.
Babby was formerly a Maryland native before bringing his talents to Akron, where he now resides. The 32-year-old is a graduate of Wheaton College and John Hopkins University Carey Business School, and has worked for the Washington Post at a variety of positions. He worked in marketing and social media for the paper and its online affiliates before he was named Vice President of Advertising, Chief Revenue Officer of Washington Post Media and General Manager of Washington Post Digital.
Babby noted the team's responsibilities beyond baseball. He said he wants to ensure community involvement with the team as well as developing positive experiences for fans.
"I want to create a memorable, unique, affordable and enjoyable fan experience, and also maximize the opportunity to create change in the community through charitable, wellness and education initiatives," Babby explained. "We have the ability to be difference-makers in Northeast Ohio and we want to seize that challenge."
Also joining Babby is Jim Pfander, who will be assuming duties as the new team General Manager. Pfander, who was the Aeros' Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer in 2011, is the second franchise general manager. The season was successful for the Aeros, not just on the diamond, as the franchise saw an increase in attendance for the first time in seven years under Pfander's guidance.
Last season, Pfander served as General Manager of the Charlotte Stone Crabs, the Class-A affiliate of the Tampa Bay Rays in Florida. The Archbishop Hoban and Ohio University alumnus has also worked for three other teams as well as the Cleveland Indians, where he was a broadcasting intern.
Babby said other executive appointments will be made in weeks to come.
The Aeros open the 2013 season at home on Thursday, April 4 at 6 p.m. against the Binghamton Mets.
Stephanie is a crime and general assignment reporter for The Morning Journal in Lorain, Ohio. She’s an alumna of Cleveland State University with a degree in Journalism and Promotional Communication. You can follow her on Twitter @7thInningSteph.