Mary-Kay is a member of the Bauer Hockey senior leadership team as Vice President, Global Marketing. Mary-Kay oversees creative, digital, social, paid media, consumer experience, sports marketing and strategic partnerships, including with the NHL, the NHLPA, international federations and pro athletes. In this role, Mary-Kay and her team develop marketing initiatives to further establish the company’s brand and products as No. 1 in the industry.
Mary-Kay is a committed and effective advocate for the game with the goal of making it more accessible, inclusive, diverse and focused on fun. This required first a brand positioning review to establish the company’s purpose and values, which then informed the development of brand initiatives rooted in new and revamped cause-related programs. Under Mary-Kay’s leadership, her team created the First Shift learn-to-play program. Now in partnership with the NHL, NHLPA, and founding partner Hockey Canada, the First Shift has welcomed over 30,000 new families to hockey. A strategic goal within the initiative is increasing girl’s participation through targeted all-girl programs and dedicated resources. As a result, First Shift girl participation climbed to 39% during the 2020-21 season.
In addition to growing girls’ participation, Mary-Kay and the Bauer team are working to elevate the women’s game and advance equity for the best players in the world through the establishment of a sustainable professional league. When young girls can dream of a prohockey career, it will inspire a pipeline of players and more young girls will build self-confidence they will carry forever. Mary-Kay believes more girls playing and more women pursuing positions at all levels will grow the game in ways that are more diverse.
To increase awareness for the women’s game, Mary-Kay significantly expanded the company’s roster of paid female athletes, which now includes top women from the U.S., Canada, Germany, Sweden and Russia, and featured them alongside their male peers in global brand campaigns.
Utilizing these partnerships, Bauer launched the first-ever all female global campaign –#WomensMovementNeverStops – that promotes women as athletes first and continues to launch all female content challenging sport stereotypes.
Advancing diversity and inclusion beyond gender equity is equally a passion for Mary-Kay. She is committed to enhancing the corporate culture at Bauer and shaping the industry to be more inclusive and welcoming. Mary-Kay and her team built equipment relief programs to help kids from underserved communities get on the ice, designed a skate to recognize the accomplishments of Willie O’Ree and helped amplify the voices of athletes from communities of color.
An athlete herself, Mary-Kay grew up immersed in hockey and believes in the power of the game to bring families together, develop character and teach valuable life lessons. She has four children, all athletic at various competitive levels, and lives in Massachusetts. Mary-Kay serves on the NHL Female Advisory Committee. She also acts as a senior advisor to the Professional Women’s Hockey Players Association and is a passionate supporter of the advocacy group, Play like a Girl.