Jay Berhalter had two tenures with U.S. Soccer (Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports)
Jay Berhalter, whose brother Gregg Berhalter is the coach of the U.S. national team, announced that he was leaving U.S. Soccer at the end of the month.
Berhalter, U.S. Soccer’s Chief Commercial and Strategy Officer, was considered a candidate to succeed Dan Flynn as CEO and secretary general. Flynn retired last year.
There were concerns by U.S. Soccer Federation observers that if Berhalter assumed the top job in the federation that there would be a severe conflict of interest with his brother guiding the USMNT. Jay Berhalter reportedly was a reason for the toxic environment at the U.S. Soccer Federation headquarters, Soccer House, in Chicago.
“Jay has played an invaluable role in the growth of our federation and the evolution of the game in our country,” U.S. Soccer president Carlos Cordeiro said in a statement. “His deep understanding of all the technical, commercial, and business aspects of the sport will have a lasting impact on the game across America.”
When Flynn departed last year, the USSF said Brian Remedi would serve as chief administrative officer in addition to chief stakeholder officer.
The federation is still searching for Flynn’s successor.
Berhalter worked for the federation for nearly 15 years spanning two periods, the first from 2000-09. He joined U.S. Soccer as the Chief Operating Officer and was a contributor in the turnaround of the federation’s financial health, doubling the organization’s annual revenue and building its operating reserves.
In 2003, Berhalter served as COO for Women’s World Cup Organizing Committee when the event was relocated to the United States due to the SARS epidemic in china. He also led sporting areas within U.S. Soccer such as player development, coaching education and the referee department. He also spearheaded the creation of the Boys’ Development Academy, launched in 2007.
After returning to the federation in February 2014 as Chief Commercial Officer, he was responsible for strategy of the organization and oversaw growth across all commercial areas, leading the federation’s rebranding efforts and launch of its visual identity. He also served as CEO of the Copa America Centenario Local Organizing Committee.
“Having been involved in the sport since the 1994 World Cup and the start of Major League Soccer, working towards the mission of making soccer the preeminent sport in the U.S. has been a fantastic opportunity throughout my career,” Berhalter said. “I am fortunate to have worked with so many passionate teammates and proud of what we have been able to accomplish together at all levels of the game. My decision to leave U.S. Soccer was not an easy one to make, but it’s the right one for my family and me at this time. Looking to the future, it is exciting to imagine the opportunities that lie ahead.”