In the midst of its pursuit of a new stadium, Louisville City FC has appointed two executives to key roles in the organization.
Brad Estes, President of Neace Ventures, whose portfolio includes the Falls City Brewing Company and Old 502 Winery, recently assumed the role of LouCity’s Executive Vice President. Steve Livingstone, a professional sports management veteran and the original president of fellow Division II soccer side Jacksonville Armada, joined LouCity as the club’s Chief Operating Officer.
Estes and Livingstone will direct the club’s front office on a day-to-day basis, while John Neace will continue to lead LouCity as Chairman and President.
“These additions to our management team represent another step forward in our ownership group’s vision for Louisville City FC,” Neace said. “We’ve signed Coach James O’Connor and his staff through 2020, when we plan to open our soccer-specific stadium, and continue to rank as one of the United Soccer League’s top franchises on the pitch. Brad and Steve’s leadership and experience will ensure that same reputation extends to the business side of our club.”
Estes and Livingstone bring complementary skill sets to their new roles.
The Louisville native Estes, a 39-year-old graduate of St. Xavier High School, has extensive knowledge of his hometown’s business climate. He will work directly with the board on LouCity’s finances as well as the master development agreement to revitalize Butchertown, starting with a 10,000-seat soccer stadium.
“In my previous work with Neace Ventures, I’ve seen the commitment Louisville City FC’s owners have to fielding a top-level club across the board,” Estes said. “I’m proud to now join the club and work directly with this talented group.”
Livingstone, originally from Glasgow, Scotland, started his career in soccer journalism before moving into sports management as the general manager of NFL Europe’s Scottish Claymores. After relocating to Florida, he directed sales, marketing and business development with the NFL’s Jacksonville Jaguars for nine seasons. From there, he successfully launched Jacksonville Armada FC, setting league attendance records in 2015.
Livingstone took up a key position as managing director of 2016’s Copa America Centenario tournament in Orlando before starting in April as a management consultant for LouCity. The 48-year-old will now oversee the club’s business operations including marketing, ticket sales, sponsorship, merchandise and game day operations.
“Louisville City FC has accomplished much in its first two-plus seasons, but there’s plenty of work still to do,” Livingstone said. “I look forward to working with Brad, John, James and the board in helping guide the front office as this club truly establishes itself in the community.”
With Estes and Livingstone working in partnership to lead LouCity’s front office, O’Connor, the third-year head coach, will continue to manage all facets of the club on the pitch.