Today, I heard that Adrian Leek, GM and Senior VP at adidas, is retiring from the brand. Adrian had two lives at adidas, and he is one of the reasons why the brand came back from the 1980s so well. Adrian is a former world-class runner who knows athletics and has reminded me (quite gently) of a couple of geek errors in a column I did years ago, but who has lived running and the adidas brand for several decades. One of his legacies is the firm relationship between adidas and the Boston Marathon, one of the finest examples, in any sport, of how sponsorships should benefit both brands.
Adrian Leek gets it. The funny thing, he always has. A personal note as well, when I was starting American Athletics in 1989-1990, Adrian Leek and his associate, Cindy Yoshimura, found money to support our dream. I was so broke, I was living with my then-in-laws and trying to keep the magazine afloat. adidas showed off the Equipment line (ads designed, i believe, by the late Peter Moore) on our inside front cover and page 1. Great brands and great brand makers get it.
I feel very lucky to work with great brands and great people each and every day! I will miss Adrian Leek.
1. Adrian Leek is retiring from adidas, some thoughts on a good man.
2. The importance of supporting grass roots.
3. Making great running shoes
4. Brands supporting the sport.
5. adidas stories.
6. Boston Marathon and adidas, a great success.
7. Happy Holidays, Merry Christmas, Happy Hannukah.