Donna Orender resigned as president of the Women’s National Basketball Association to launch an independent marketing company.
Orender’s resignation, effective at the end of the year, comes after six years in which the league experienced growth in attendance, television ratings and sponsorship, according to a WNBA statement. Orender Unlimited, her marketing, media and strategy company, will start next year.
“It was simply time for me to take this step in my life,” Orender said in the statement. “My work on behalf of women and girls around the world will only deepen as will my ongoing engagement in sports.”
Orender, a former All-American basketball player at Queens College of New York, received the 2006 March of Dimes’ Sports Leadership Award and recently was selected as a global ambassador to the United Nations’ Girl Up campaign. She will continue to serve as a consultant for the league, the statement said.
Chris Granger, NBA senior vice president of team marketing and business operations, will assume Orender’s duties until a full-time successor is chosen.