Stan Kasten

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Stan Kasten on June 5, 2010

Stan Kasten (born February 1, 1952 in Lakewood Township, New Jersey) is the former President of the Atlanta Braves and Washington Nationals and the current president, and part-owner, of the Los Angeles Dodgers.

Biography[edit]

Kasten was a longtime fixture in Atlanta professional sports primarily due to his association with Ted Turner. It started in 1979, when at age 27 he became the youngest general manager in the National Basketball Association, for the Atlanta Hawks. He held this position until 1990, while becoming the Hawks' president in 1986. During his lengthy tenure in the Hawks' front office, Kasten became the first (and so far the only) NBA executive to win back-to-back NBA Executive of the Year awards, accomplishing this feat in 1986 & 1987. He was also able to build Atlanta into a perennial playoff contender. Led by the Hall of Fame play of superstar Dominique Wilkins, Kasten's Hawks achieved four straight 50-win seasons (1986 to 1989) and set franchise records in attendance. In the 1990s, he guided Atlanta to a stretch of 7 consecutive playoff appearances, including three 50-win seasons during the decade.[1]

Kasten would also become president of the Atlanta Braves in 1986. From 1987 to 2003, the Braves won more games than any other team in major league baseball. As president of the Braves, he delegated all baseball decisions to Atlanta GM John Schuerholz, who put together strong, talented teams that consistently competed for a world championship (although only one of them actually won one; see below). The Braves of that time, under the stellar managerial leadership of Bobby Cox, were centered around a powerful pitching staff which featured Greg Maddux, Tom Glavine, Steve Avery and John Smoltz. They also featured All-Star third baseman Chipper Jones, who is regarded as one of the best hitters in Braves' history as well as one of the best switch-hitters and third basemen ever. From 1991 to 2005, the Braves won 14 straight division titles, 5 National League pennants and the World Series championship in 1995 (The 1994 season season was ended prematurely, without titles or postseason play, cut short by the players' strike.) In 1999, when the National Hockey League would award an expansion team to Atlanta, Kasten became president of the Atlanta Thrashers as well as chairman of the newly built Philips Arena. He held all these positions until 2003, when he stepped down, but then assumed the presidency of the Washington Nationals in 2006 under the Lerner family ownership group. It was reported on September 23, 2010 that Kasten would step down as Nationals' team president.[2]

In January 2012, Kasten joined Magic Johnson, Peter Guber and Guggenheim Partners bidding for ownership of the Los Angeles Dodgers baseball team.[3] On March 27 it was reported that the partnership, led by Guggenheim controlling partner Mark Walter, had submitted a winning bid of $2.15 billion (including surrounding land) -- some 25% above the nearest offer.[4] Kasten became team president once the sale closed, on April 30, 2012.

Personal life[edit]

Kasten graduated from Columbia Law School while living in John Jay Hall. He is also a graduate of New York University. He had also attended Ner Israel Rabbinical College as a high school student for a short time before graduating from the Yeshiva University High School for Boys in 1969.

He is married to Helen Weisz Kasten, and has four children: Alana Kasten Sonenshine, Corey (Reuven) Kasten, Sherry Kasten Marks and Jay Kasten.

Notes[edit]

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Preceded by
Ted Turner
Atlanta Braves President
1986-2003
Succeeded by
John Schuerholz
Preceded by
Tony Tavares
Washington Nationals President
2006-2010
Succeeded by
No official president
Preceded by
Dennis Mannion
Los Angeles Dodgers President
2012-present
Succeeded by
Current