Western Michigan Athletics Renews Relationship With The Aspire Group With A Multi-Year Deal

January 23, 2023

Share This:

Kalamazoo, MI – The Western Michigan University Department of Intercollegiate Athletics (WMU) and The Aspire Group (Aspire) have announced a multi-year partnership. Aspire staff will be returning to Kalamazoo to establish an on-site Fan Relationship Management Center (FRMC) that will be responsible for outbound sales of the entire product menu across all of the Broncos’ ticketed sports. In their previous time on campus, from 2017 to 2020, Aspire sold nearly 90,000 tickets on behalf of Broncos athletics.

“We are excited to partner with The Aspire Group for our outbound ticket sales,” said Elaine Russell, Senior Associate Athletic Director for External Operations at Western Michigan. “The Aspire Group is a leader in ticket sales, and their approach to maximizing revenue is nationally recognized.  We are looking forward to the Aspire staff working alongside the current members of our external team to maximize ticket sales and enhance the fan experience.”

Aspire staff will be embedded in the Broncos’ external relations team and work collaboratively to optimize revenue growth strategies while also bringing a comprehensive fan-centric approach to the department. Western Michigan Athletics and Aspire have hired James Kaplan to be the manager of ticket sales and service at the Broncos FRMC. Kaplan spent the last three years as team leader of Aspire’s Rutgers University FRMC, where he helped develop season ticket, single game, and group ticket sales campaigns.

“We are thrilled to partner once again with Western Michigan University Athletics. Our partnership will enable our on-campus Fan Relationship Management Center staff to deliver on Dan Bartholomae’s vision for comprehensive excellence,” said Bill Fagan, President and CEO of The Aspire Group. “Our sales and service team will regularly engage alumni, fans, donors, and supporters while providing excellent service to build Bronco fans for life.”

Western Michigan joins Ball State, Eastern Michigan, Miami (OH), and Toledo as active Aspire partners from the Mid-American Conference.

About Western Michigan University Athletics

Founded in 1903 and located in Kalamazoo, Michigan, Western Michigan University is a public research institute with a student body of just over 16,500. Western Michigan fields teams in football, baseball, basketball, soccer, tennis, cross country, golf, gymnastics, softball, volleyball, and track & field. The “Broncos” have won 2 NCAA championships and over 100 regular and postseason conference titles.

For more information about Western Michigan University Athletics visit:

About The Aspire Group

The Aspire Group is an award winning sports and entertainment marketing firm, named as a top employer in the industry by both Forbes and Front Office Sports. Globally recognized for innovative consulting, ticket sales, and partnership services, Aspire created the outsourced ticket sales niche, revolutionizing with its first Fan Relationship Management Center (FRMC) at Georgia Tech in 2009. Over the past 14 years, more than 280 collegiate and professional sports properties have trusted Aspire to drive revenue, attendance, and enterprise-value growth through the combination of strategic consulting and researchsales and service training, and best-in-industry fan relationship management.

For more information about The Aspire Group visit: and Follow us on Twitter @theaspire_group

Leave a comment