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Welcoming Professor Jones to Rice

The newest addition to Rice University’s Sport Management Department, Karen Jones, serves as the Head of the Sport Law Concentration and as a lecturer. She is the ultimate powerhouse, holding the job titles of lawyer, professional, and business owner. Professor Jones has already hit the ground running at Rice, offering three upper-level courses this fall: Sport Law (SMGT 364), Sport Mediation (SMGT 365), and Issues In Contemporary Sport (SMGT 368).

Her educational background is as impressive as it is extensive. She possesses bachelor’s degrees in Communications and Theater Arts from Columbia College Chicago, a master’s degree in Sociology with an emphasis in Organizational Behavior from DePaul University, a J.D. from SMU, and a L.L.M. certificate in International Business and Trade Law from John Marshall Law School.

Moreover, she has held senior management positions with global corporations for almost 20 years, including at Philips Electronics Company, HSBC North America, Experian, and Dell. To top it all off, she also runs her own business – Mission2Transition LLC – providing management, mediation, operations and legal support services, as well as performing speaking engagements to expose students to opportunities in sport law and management. HC Rice had the awesome opportunity to ask Professor Jones a few questions:

What would you like to accomplish in your first couple of years at Rice?

“I want to integrate a strong sports law program within the sports management department. I really want to help students to see the wide-range of opportunities that exist to them in sports management generally and sports law specifically. I look forward to bringing a greater emphasis on exposing students to international sports law options and opportunities.”

What are you most looking forward to at Rice?

“Becoming part of the Rice University community, getting to know the students and faculty, making a valuable contribution to the sports management department, and helping to increase knowledge and opportunities for students.”

Is there anything that surprised you about Rice?

“Rice is more relaxed and welcoming than I expected. I am also impressed by the close relationship that faculty have with their students, and how dedicated the sports management faculty and the school in general seem to be in supporting and promoting the best interests of the students.”

One thing you want students at Rice to know about you?

“I love fine arts. I was a theater major in my undergraduate studies and actually performed on stage, in commercials and small parts in movies for many years. I always try to bring some level of creativity to my classes.”

Last book you read and movie you watched?

The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks and the last couple of movies that I saw at the movie theater – Wonder Woman, LOVED IT! And Girls Trip, very funny!”

Make sure to welcome Professor Jones if you see her around campus and to sign up for her classes!

Hello! My name is Savannah Martell-Durkin. I am a rising senior at Rice University in Houston, TX studying Sport Management and Business. I also am on the Rice University Varsity Women's Tennis Team. During my time at Rice I realized that I enjoyed learning about different marketing techniques and tactics in my classes so I started to pursue internships in that field. I have worked at the Orange Bowl Committee in Miami, Rice's Jones Graduate School of Business and Live Nation both in Houston and all with a focus on Marketing and Communications. Some things I like to do in my spare time include reading books that are also movies, volunteering at animal shelters, and experiencing new adventures.
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