It’s official! After BLACK ENTERPRISE reported back in January that the Atlanta Dream WNBA franchise was close to being sold and former Georgia Sen. Kelly Loeffler will have no association with the team after the sale, the team is out of her hands!
The WNBA and NBA Boards of Governors have announced that they have unanimously approved the sale of the Atlanta Dream to Larry Gottesdiener, chairman of Northland, an industry-leading national real estate firm. The investor group for the Atlanta Dream franchise consists of Gottesdiener, Northland President and Chief Operating Officer Suzanne Abair, and former Dream basketball player Renee Montgomery.
“With the unanimous WNBA and NBA votes, today marks a new beginning for the Atlanta Dream organization and we are very pleased to welcome Larry Gottesdiener and Suzanne Abair to the WNBA,” said WNBA Commissioner Cathy Engelbert in a written statement. “I admire their passion for women’s basketball, but more importantly, have been impressed with their values. I am also thrilled that former WNBA star Renee Montgomery will be joining the ownership group as an investor and executive for the team. Renee is a trailblazer who has made a major impact both in the game and beyond.”
With the sale to the group, two-time WNBA champion Montgomery becomes the first former player to become both an owner and executive of a WNBA team. She recently sat out the 2020 season to focus on social justice issues and recently announced she has retired from the league after 11 seasons.
“My Dream has come true,” said Montgomery. “Breaking barriers for minorities and women by being the first former WNBA player to have both a stake in ownership and a leadership role with the team is an opportunity that I take very seriously. I invite you to join me as the Dream builds momentum in Atlanta!”
Mary Brock and Kelly Loeffler also added, “Ten years ago we stepped up to keep the Dream in Atlanta, as an important asset for a vibrant and diverse city. It was also important to us to help level the playing field for women’s professional sports. We are proud of what we accomplished and wish the team well in their next chapter. We will always value the hard work and dedication, and the memories, fans, and friendships that sustained our commitment to the Atlanta Dream over the last decade.”