Tim Bezbatchenko — President and General Manager
Currently in his fourth year with Columbus Crew, Tim Bezbatchenko was named Crew President & General Manager on January 4, 2019. In his role, Bezbatchenko leads both the Club’s business and soccer operations. Bezbatchenko’s previous experience includes serving as Toronto FC’s Senior Vice President of Soccer Operations & General Manager from 2013-2018 and working as the Senior Director of Player Relations and Competition for Major League Soccer from 2010-2013. In 2021, Bezbatchenko was named to the Forty Under 40 by the Sports Business Journal, an annual honor that celebrates the best young talent in sports business.
Since joining the Crew, Bezbatchenko has overseen several Club milestones in the sporting side, including leading the Club to winning the 2020 MLS Cup and the 2021 Campeones Cup – the Crew’s first international trophy – a s well as making several signings including Argentine midfielder Lucas Zelarayan, whose transfer transaction represents the Crew’s largest acquisition transfer fee in Club history. On the business side, Bezbatchenko’s accomplishments with the Club include overseeing the opening Lower.com Field and the OhioHealth Performance Center – the Crew’s training center – and the announcement of a multi-year jersey sponsorship agreement with Nationwide Insurance.
A native of Westerville, Ohio, Tim Bezbatchenko was pivotal in helping Toronto FC sign key players such as 2015 Golden Boot winner and Landon Donovan MLS Most Valuable Player Sebastian Giovinco, England international Jermain Defoe and American internationals Michael Bradley and Jozy Altidore. In addition to its 2017 domestic treble, notably, Toronto FC had four of its best seasons while Bezbatchenko was with the club (2014-2017), winning MLS Cup in 2017 and winning a total of three consecutive Canadian Championships (2016, 2017, 2018) and reaching the 2018 CONCACAF Champions League Finals. On the player development side, Bezbatchenko helped Toronto FC establish its United Soccer League club, TFC II, in 2015.
Before his time in Toronto, Bezbatchenko worked as the Senior Director of Player Relations and Competition for MLS from 2010-2013, a role in which he oversaw all MLS rosters, the MLS player pool, and team salary budgets. Additionally, he was responsible for youth and player development initiatives for the League.
Prior to joining MLS, Bezbatchenko served as an attorney for Shearman & Sterling LLP, in New York. He graduated with honors from the University of Richmond with a Bachelor of Arts in Economics and Leadership Studies in 2004 and later from the University of Cincinnati College of Law in 2008.
As a player, Bezbatchenko was an Academic All-American and All-Conference midfielder at the University of Richmond. He played professionally with the Pittsburgh Riverhounds of the United Soccer League, winning the league title in 2004.