Nick Kopka and MiKayla Morton Join Louisville Sports Commission Staff | Sports Destination Management

Nick Kopka and MiKayla Morton Join Louisville Sports Commission Staff

Sep 26, 2022

Nick Kopka and MiKayla Morton have joined the Louisville Sports Commission’s (LSC) staff, and long-time LSC vice president Julie Howell has been promoted to chief revenue officer. Kopka takes over as director of event operations and Morton as manager of events and programs.


The announcement was made today by LSC President & CEO Karl F. Schmitt Jr.


“The skill sets and experience that Nick Kopka and Mikayla Morton bring to the LSC will help us continue the tradition of creating great experiences for athletes, their families and supporters of our owned and hosted events,” Schmitt said. “And Julie Howell’s promotion is recognition of her continued leadership and role in growing our corporate, individual and philanthropic support.”


Howell’s title change reflects her expanded duties of connecting revenue initiatives with marketing, public relations, CRM and operations to create ideal participant and client experiences.


Since joining LSC in 2009, Howell has increased the number of companies supporting the organization from 10 to more than 250, and has increased sponsorship revenues nearly 10-fold. She created LSC’s Corporate Partners program and the annual Golden Ticket raffle and has secured sponsorships for the company’s Paul Hornung Award presented by Texas Roadhouse, the Live in Lou Cross Country Classic, the Louisville Corporate Games presented by Humana, the Kentucky Sports Hall of Fame, the Urban Bourbon Half Marathon presented by Jim Beam, Louisville Pure Tap® 5k and the Norton Sports Health 8K. Howell also played an integral part in obtaining funding to host the 2013 UCI Cyclocross World Championships, IRONMAN Louisville, USA Cycling Amateur Road National Championships, USA Cycling Cyclocross National Championships and was the driving force behind LSC raising $1 million to improve the BMX course at E. P. “Tom” Sawyer State Park to Olympic standards.


Prior to LSC, Howell was the director of development at the Louisville Ballet; vice president, partnerships for the Fund for the Arts; and managing director of the Kentucky Repertory Theatre.


As director of event operation, Kopka is responsible for planning and staging all LSC owned and operated events, supporting operation needs for events that LSC attracts and hosts and managing LSC’s volunteer and internship programs.


Kopka most recently was event and program manager at the Indianapolis 500 Festival where his responsibilities included the running event Expo and Kid’s Day Festival. Previously, he spent three years as the logistics manager for the Shreveport-Bossier Sports Commission, where he oversaw event operations, budget management and the volunteer program. Kopka graduated from Ball State University in 2014 with a Bachelor of Science in Sport Management, then earned an MBA and a Master of Sports Administration at Ohio University in 2017 and 2018, respectively. His operations experience includes the Super Bowl, the NCAA Men’s Final Four Basketball Tournament, Men’s and Women’s Big Sky Basketball Tournament, USA Cycling Amateur Road National Championships and Cyclocross National Championships.


As manager of events and programs, Morton will provide support for LSC’s Sports Fun(d) grant program, event operations, revenue development and serve as primary liaison with local companies for Louisville Corporate Games. She was an intern at LSC this past spring while completing her degree and graduating Summa Cum Laude from the University of Louisville Sports Administration program where she earned the Savannah Walker Award for Social Justice. Morton is a Louisville native and graduate of Male High School, where she was a member of several state championship track and field sprint relay teams.

About Louisville Sports Commission

The Louisville Sports Commission (LSC) is a Louisville, Kentucky-based 501(c)(3) organization whose mission is to create, attract and host sporting events and activities that enhance the local economy; help attract and retain talent at local companies; and help improve the health in our community by encouraging active lifestyles. More information is available online at and

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