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NIKE VETERAN JEFF LIENHART TO LEAD LOUISVILLE SLUGGER GLOBAL BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT

LOUISVILLE, KY (April 20, 2011) – Just as a Major League® club acquires top talent to compete and win, Hillerich & Bradsby Co.’s historic Louisville Slugger® division has landed a sporting goods industry leader who knows how to win.  Jeff Lienhart, 41, has joined the Louisville Slugger team to oversee the 127-year-old brand’s global business development efforts. 

Jeff LienhartLienhart, who will serve as Louisville Slugger’s VP of Global Business Development, is a 14-year veteran of Nike’s sales organization where he rode the fast track to a number of high-level sales leadership roles.  However, Lienhart is no stranger to Louisville Slugger.  He started his career in the company’s sales training program in 1993.

“We’re thrilled to have Jeff come home to Louisville Slugger,” said new Louisville Slugger division president Bill Clark. Clark was recently named to replace
35-year Slugger veteran Marty Archer, who has become president emeritus.  “We’ve followed Jeff’s career with great admiration since he left H&B in 1996.  He has an incredible track record for delivering outstanding results.  We expect great contributions from Jeff as our entire Louisville Slugger team works hard to win every day.”

Lienhart will play an important role in H&B strategic planning and oversee all Louisville Slugger, TPX® and TPS® product category sales in the U.S. and internationally, including bats, fielding gloves, batting gloves, catchers gear, equipment bags and accessories.

“H&B is a great sports company and Louisville Slugger is the greatest brand in baseball and softball in the world.  I’ve always been very proud to have started my career here,” Lienhart said.

“I can tell our customers this.  Louisville Slugger is going to be very aggressive.  I’m guided by a philosophy that all decisions begin and end with the customer in mind.  We are going to challenge everything and everyone in our organization because we want to win, and we will win.  And we’ll help our customers win by developing outstanding products and by providing great pricing, incredible customer service and best-in-class business collaboration.”

Lienhart started his Nike career as a Senior Sales Representative and eventually became Director of Sales and Operations for Nike Golf, where his responsibilities encompassed all categories – balls, clubs, apparel, footwear and accessories.  He managed the entire field sales organization and all sales operations functions.  In addition, he also served as a National Sales Manager, Regional Sales Manager, and Category Sales and Marketing Manager.

“Jeff knows we are setting expectations very high, and he welcomes that,” Clark said.  “He is a fierce competitor who has a stellar reputation as a man of integrity and ethics.  That’s the Louisville Slugger way, and that’s why I’m confident Jeff is the perfect fit to lead our global commerce.”

Lienhart is a graduate of West Virginia University in Morgantown with a Bachelor of Science in Business-Marketing.  Jeff and his wife, Missy, have three children: Jackson, Emily, and Bradley.

About Louisville Slugger®
Louisville Slugger® is the Official Bat of Major League Baseball and is a name that is synonymous with America’s pastime.  Originating in 1884, Louisville Slugger bats have graced the hands of the greatest players in baseball history, including Babe Ruth, Ted Williams, Joe DiMaggio, Stan Musial, Jackie Robinson and Hank Aaron, to name just a few.  Stars of today also swing Louisville Slugger bats including Alex Rodriguez, Dustin Pedroia, Jim Thome, David Wright and Joey Votto.  Louisville Slugger also makes TPX® baseball equipment for college, high school and youth players, as well as TPS® equipment for slow-pitch and fastpitch softball players.  Louisville Slugger is a brand of the Hillerich & Bradsby Co., a fifth-generation family-owned business that also owns and operates Louisville Slugger Museum & Factory and makes PowerBilt® golf clubs and Bionic® Gloves for a variety of sports and hobbies.

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