Sports Asset Management Committee Profile: David Dukes, Senior Director, Technical Operations, PGA TOUR Entertainment

By Juliane Pettorossi, Editorial Assistant, SVG

Earlier this year, SVG launched the Sports Asset Management (SAM) Committee, dedicated to advancing the sports-media industry’s content-management and -storage capabilities and tools. This group, comprising asset-management leaders from each of the major U.S. professional leagues and college-sports entities, spearheaded last month’s Sports Asset Management Forum and will contribute in-depth content to the upcoming online SVG Sports Asset Management Playbook (to be unveiled later this year). SVG is profiling the careers of all eight SAM Committee members.

As a child growing up in Louisville, KY, David Dukes wasn’t particularly interested in pursuing a profession that revolved around sports, even though he played soccer and swam in high school.

“I was a sports fan but never had it targeted as a career,” he says.

Instead, he wanted to venture into TV and decided to major in television broadcast at Western Kentucky University.

While there, Dukes worked for the college TV station, WKYU-TV, and, after graduation, landed a job copying and editing for Post Production Services in Cincinnati. After about eight years at PPS, in 1996, he heard about an opening at PGA TOUR, sent in his résumé and demo reel, and was offered a job as an editor.

“One thing led to another,” he says, “and I was brought into sports (and, obviously, golf) at that point.”

Since then, Dukes has moved steadily through the ranks: from editor to senior editor, technical operations manager, director of technical operations, and, currently, senior director of technical operations.

“Each [position] brought in more of the operational aspects of the facility,” he notes. “They used to be divided among a couple of areas.”

Dukes finds it challenging to manage and bring together varying types of technology, mainly as related to the integration of traditional IT-based realms and what was traditionally in the broadcast-TV space.

“It’s difficult to try to weave those together, working with other areas and other IT guys,” he says, “Working across those disciplines effectively is tough to do.”

With technology booming, it’s the radical changes and how fans and viewers are consuming content that worries Dukes about the future of the industry.

“It went rapidly from producing for television to producing for you name it: smartphones, tablets, Websites, television, all of those added in together,” he points out. “It just keeps going further and further that way, and the traditional models really stop applying. It’s going to continue.”

When Dukes isn’t at work, what’s his favorite pastime? This will be a shocker: “Golf!” he says.

He didn’t pick up a club until he was 27 but loves the game and believes the TOUR is an incredible organization.

“I do like to play a lot, actually. I love golf. I enjoy spending time with my family and hanging out on the days I can, you know, have a lazy day at the pool.”

When it comes to Duke’s favorite game to watch, college basketball (and golf) takes the win. “I like the college game better and the attitude of the players,” he says. “I also like a little defense in my basketball.”

A former colleague of Duke’s at PPS and PGA TOUR has been one of his biggest mentors. Chuck Scoggins, retired VP of operations at the TOUR and an advisory board member for SVG, has been a friend and co-worker for many years.

“He was always one of those mentors that was not just a professional mentor but a good friend,” says Dukes, “I got a lot of good technical and wider-aspect career and life advice.”