REDWOOD CITY, CA- Week 2 of Front Office stories takes more of a homegrown lens. I will do the honors of introducing a Co-Founder and Leader of Brand Strategy, Ivan Martinez.
The creation of a pro soccer team is no joke. It takes motivated individuals who are willing to wear multiple hats and put in the behind-the-scenes work that isn’t always recognized. But since its creation, Bay Cities FC’s main goal was to give the city of Redwood City, and the Peninsula at large, a soccer team they can get behind. Community is everything to a sports team, and our community is the core of who we are.
“My role is to guide our brand in the direction that best represents and elevates the culture of our community,” says Ivan. “The funnest part is collaborating with the creatives of our operation and our community stakeholders.” Ivan comes to Bay Cities FC with previous experience as a Non-Profit Executive Director Based in Redwood City, CA, a Multi-Media Production Entrepreneur and a SMC Healthcare Elected Official.
As I said above, Ivan is someone on our team that is from Redwood City and knows how special and unique this community is. “I grew up in the Redwood City community participating in a lot of the same organizations that I collaborate with now. A lot of my community work has focused on bringing equitable opportunities in youth enrichment, education and the arts for underserved communities across the Bay Area.”A fundamental pillar of Bay Cities FC’s identity is giving back to the community and the youth through soccer. When asked what is the most important thing he wants to accomplish by creating this club, Ivan said, “We want to be the bridge of cross sector collaborations. Through soccer, we look to establish a club presence that brings impact on the field and off the field. We look forward to aligning opportunities for the kids in our local schools, and also generate more business for our local businesses.”
I asked Ivan what his thoughts were on the Summer 21 tour where Bay Cities FC cultivated a Men’s and Women’s team to play over this past summer. His response was, “It was exciting to see our community come out and cheer. It was more heartwarming to see how much support our club received from our city council, non-profits, and local businesses that coordinated family and friends to come out and make it special. Lastly, all of our players were a joy to watch. I don’t ever remember screaming so loud for a goal!” Goals hit closer to home when you are putting in the work behind-the-scenes to make the project happen.
Redwood City and the Peninsula area of the Bay Area is a huge soccer hub. The teams range all around from very successful youth competitive teams to D1 program all within 20 minutes of each other. I asked Ivan why this community would benefit from having a professional soccer team and he said, “Having a pro soccer team of our own means we have an opportunity to spread more love in our community, an opportunity to share our passion for the sport, and an opportunity to be the bridge of conversations that can bring positive change to our community’s future. That means everything to me.”
As we work in this off-season to prepare for the upcoming season of play in NISA, I asked Ivan about the future he sees for Bay Cities FC, to which he said,“I see W’s in the main score column which is being an active leader in the pro sports community. Our passionate hearts for soccer will help us bring purpose and opportunity to all those around us.”
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