About Us


To be the leading and most trusted global authority on providing safety, security and fan experience for sports and entertainment.


To build and support a global alliance of thought leaders and stakeholders centered around safety, security and the services that contribute to the ideal fan experience while being the world’s resource for the most relevant and up-to-date information in the field.


A Few Words About Us

Innovation Institute was established in 2020 with the intent of building a global alliance to lead the NEXT great leap in fan experience — one steeped in health, safety, security, and service. We are bound together by passion and the incomparable skills of visionary thought leaders throughout the international community. Along with our technical and subject matter experts, we are innovating new ways to change the world’s sports and entertainment fan experience for the better.

This Is Why


Subject Matter Leaders

The Innovation Institute leadership team has firsthand knowledge and experience combined with exceptional capabilities and an unrivaled network of subject matter experts, thought leaders, technologists, futurists, trainers, and business leaders to assist sports and entertainment organizations with an array of expertise, services, and products to meet the challenges of the “new normal”.

Recommending best practices

We collaborate with sports and entertainment executives to assess their safety, security, and service baseline and recommend best practices that inform resource prioritization in organizational budgets, and guide development of innovative risk treatment strategies to enhance their safety, security and service resiliency.


The team has executive leadership, experience, and expertise in sports management, public safety, crowd management, incident management, event operations and human capital development that offers real insight into issues posed by current and emerging risks to safety, security, and service at sports and entertainment events.


The Innovation Institute is a member-funded and member-informed organization that has named an unparalleled group of Institute Fellows representing the best and the brightest in the industry. Through expert collaboration, the Innovation Institute is building the largest global alliance to lead a world of sport and entertainment that has been forever changed and informed by the COVID-19 pandemic.

While the pandemic will eventually pass, the world has been awakened to the reality that the way we do business can change overnight, and in an industry that depends on the very idea of gathering people together, we must be ready for anything.

Our Team

Dr. Lou Marciani

Director and Co-Founder
Innovation Institute for Fan Experience

Christopher Kinnan

Associate Director and Chief Operating Officer/Co-Founder
Innovation Institute for Fan Experience

John F. White

Treasurer and Co-Founder
Innovation Institute for Fan Experience

Dr. Mark Zhang

Research Consultant Innovation
Institute for Fan Experience

Ross Halliday

Global Strategic Advisor
Innovation Institute for Fan Experience


Strategic Technology Advisor
Innovation Institute for Fan Experience

Allison Buchanan

Strategic Marketing Advisor
Innovation Institute for Fan Experience

Matthew Stroup

innovation institute for fan experience

Guy Grace

Strategic Safety and Security Advisor
Innovation Institute for Fan Experience

Ari Eizen

innovation institute for fan experience

Mark McCourt

Strategic Corporate Advisor
Innovation Institute for Fan Experience

international offices


Peter Ashwin

Event Risk Management Solutions LLC


Peter Dalton

Protective Security and Incident Command Consultant

Paul Foster

Chief Executive Officer

Chris Kemp

Chief Executive Officer
Mind Over Matter Consultancy Ltd

Western Asia/Southeastern Europe


Associate Professor and Chair
of Sports Management
Igdir University
Igdir, Turkey


Eloise Brasi

Police Captaine
Head Deputy of the Safety and Security Pole for the 2024 Olympic and Paralympic Games

Mario Coutinho

Vice President of Stadium Operations and Security
Toronto Blue Jays

Caitlyn Durkovich

Toffler Associates

Rick Fenton

Vice President/CSO of Corporate Security
Ilitch Holdings

Brian Finch

Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman LLP

Gary Gardner

President & CEO

Joe Lewis

Joe Lewis Company

Scott McCartney

Director of Team Security
San Antonio Spurs

Jim Mercurio

Executive Vice President & General Manager
San Francisco 49ers

Russ Simons

Chief Listening Officer and Management Partner
Venue Solutions Group

Liam Boylan

Stadium Director
Wembley Stadium

John Bertsch, CSSP

Executive Director Global Safety and Security The Ironman Group

Michael Roberts

Director. Security, Safety and Precinct Operations,
Melbourne Cricket Club

B. Tilman Jolly, MD, FACEP

Chief Medical Officer
Aveshka, Inc.

Michael O’Connell

Managing Director
Critical Insights Consultancy Ltd.

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