Kristin Bernert — President of Business Operations
Kristin Bernert is in her second season as President of Business Operations for the Columbus Crew after joining the club in January 2022. Bernert directs all business endeavors for the Crew, including fan engagement and marketing; community partnerships and impact; game experience and facility management; ticket sales and services; corporate partnerships and overall revenue generation; and organizational administration. She has decades of experience in leadership roles in the sports and entertainment industry, encompassing the MLS, NBA, WNBA, NHL, NWSL and more.
Under Bernert’s tutelage, the Columbus Crew have continued to grow revenue generation through corporate partnerships and ticket sales, both of which rank in the top five among all MLS teams. Additionally, she has led the club’s significant enhancements to the overall fan experience and premium spaces at Lower.com Field, which previously was recognized in 2022 as a finalist for “Sports Facility of the Year” by SportsBusiness Journal (SBJ).
In 2021, Bernert – honored as a “Game Changer” by SBJ in 2016 and as one of Crain’s Business Journal’s “Notable Women in Sports” in 2019 – launched KB2 Sports to provide a wide range of best business practices and innovative strategies to leaders of various professional sports organizations. KB2 Sports offers advisory services related to business development and structure, long-term planning, talent acquisition, special projects and other functions for many entities across the sports industry, including the NWSL and Gotham FC, and multiple WNBA teams, as well as other companies focused on fan engagement and content creation.
Prior to establishing KB2 Sports, Bernert spent 10 years with Madison Square Garden Sports (MSGS), ultimately rising to Executive Vice President of Business Operations in 2018. In her role, she led business initiatives for all MSGS teams and affiliates, encompassing the New York Knicks, New York Rangers, Westchester Knicks, Hartford Wolf Pack, Knicks Gaming, and Counter Logic Gaming.
Bernert initially joined MSGS in 2011 as the Vice President of Business Operations for the New York Liberty, where she also led player personnel and team development. Before joining MSGS, she held a number of significant leadership positions in professional basketball, including President of the WNBA’s Los Angeles Sparks (2008-2010); Vice President of Team Marketing and Business Operations at the NBA (2005-2008); and Vice President of the WNBA’s Detroit Shock (2002-2005).
From 2000-2002, she was a corporate sales representative for the Cleveland Indians. She began her career in college sports with The Ohio State University (assistant marketing director, 1997) and Bowling Green State University (assistant athletics director, 1998-2000).
Hailing from Stow, Ohio, Bernert graduated from Siena College with a degree in psychology and earned a master’s in sports management from The Ohio State University. While at Siena, she appeared in 106 games with 59 starts at the point for the Saints basketball team from 1992-1996 and was enshrined in the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference (MAAC) Hall of Fame in 2015.