Sports Field Management Association Names Laura Simmons New CEO

(LAWRENCE, Kan.) – Sports Field Management Association (SFMA) – the non-profit, professional association for the 2,700 men and women who manage sports fields worldwide – has appointed Laura Simmons as CEO, a role where she will lead the association’s growth initiatives and execute its strategic plan.

After reviewing hundreds of applicants and conducting numerous rounds of interviews, the SFMA Board of Directors concluded Simmons was the right candidate to lead the organization into the future. Her duties include enhancing SFMA’s role and profile as an advocate and positioning the Association as the leader in the field for years to come. Additionally, Simmons will oversee efforts to expand educational opportunities, forge new partnerships, diversify revenue and add programmatic offerings that promote long-term member value and enhance SFMA’s existing networking platform.

“Laura brings both a wealth of knowledge on how to effectively manage professional associations and an infectious energy for the sports field management industry,” says SFMA President, James Bergdoll. “Under Laura’s leadership, I am confident her fresh perspective will help us achieve our goals and we cannot wait for her to get to work on our members behalf.”

Simmons has a proven track record of association leadership, including developing innovative programs, growing membership, managing finances/budgets and implementing strategic plans. Most recently, she served as Deputy Director for the Federation of State Massage Therapy Boards and has more than two decades of experience serving associations and working in the world of property management.

“I’ve always had immense respect for the men and women who prepare safe, enjoyable playing surfaces at all levels, be that professional and college fields or the communal spaces that serve communities of all sizes,” says Simmons. “My goals are to help our members reach new heights in their profession, raise the profile of the industry and build a sustainable and bright future for SFMA.”

Simmons received her MBA from Webster University and a BA from the University of Kansas, and has been recognized as a Certified Association Executive (CAE) from the American Society of Association Executives. She currently resides about 45 minutes outside of Kansas City. She officially assumed the CEO role on December 1.

SFMA members will have the opportunity to meet Laura and hear more about her vision for the association during the 2023 SFMA Conference and Exhibition, taking place in Salt Lake City from January 16-19. To register for the event or learn more, please visit

Since 1981, SFMA has provided members education, information and practical knowledge in the art and science of sports field management. Today, more than 2,700 members across 32 local chapters oversee the fields at professional sports stadiums, universities, colleges, schools and parks and recreation facilities.

More information: 800.323.3875.

About SFMA

SFMA is the non-profit, professional association for men and women who manage sports fields worldwide. Since 1981, it has provided education, information and practical knowledge in the art and science of sports field management. More than 2,700 members across 32 local chapters oversee facilities at schools, colleges and universities, parks and recreational facilities, and professional sports stadiums. Sports include football, baseball, soccer, lacrosse, softball, rugby and horse racing.