Jeff is well known in the sports business industry as one of the utmost experts in his field of client representation, consulting on deals upwards of $800 million dollars just in the last 4 years alone. He has set the bar, representing clients in unprecedented cases that have helped shaped today’s sports landscape. Jeff has worked with some of the top athletes, agents and organizations in sports and is highly respected among his peers for his commitment to integrity and his steadfast approach to representing his clients. Jeff is completely dedicated to ensuring hi
Jeff is well known in the sports business industry as one of the utmost experts in his field of client representation, consulting on deals upwards of $800 million dollars just in the last 4 years alone. He has set the bar, representing clients in unprecedented cases that have helped shaped today’s sports landscape. Jeff has worked with some of the top athletes, agents and organizations in sports and is highly respected among his peers for his commitment to integrity and his steadfast approach to representing his clients. Jeff is completely dedicated to ensuring his client’s goals are advanced and their rights enforced and protected, which differentiates him from many in his field.
“You need guts to stand up to the other side. They have more researchers, more money, and more lawyers than you. You’re outmatched so you’re going to have to bring your lunch pail with you and be ready to work hard and smart.” - Jeff Fannell (on his approach to player representation).
Jeff is the pillar of Jeff Fannell & Associates, overseeing all operations, as well as leading client representation. He established JFA following ten successful years of serving as Counsel and then Assistant General Counsel of the Major League Baseball Players Association. As a key figure at the MLBPA, he managed grievances on behalf of the players, helped counsel players and agents in matters of salary arbitration, contract negotiations and other issues arising under the collective bargaining agreement and individual player contracts. In his time with the MLBPA, Jeff served as an Association representative in more than 50 salary arbitration hearings.
“Because I spent 10 years at the Union I’m very familiar with the arbitration process. This, plus my private practice experience, helps give me a unique perspective.” - Jeff Fannell (on the value of experience).
A New York native, born in Brooklyn, raised in Hollis, Queens, Jeff did not always have dreams of being an attorney, let alone a successful sports agent. He did, however, understand the importance of education, being steadfast in your decision making and using research as a tool to set goals and become secure in making independent decisions. Upon graduating high school in 1979, Jeff enrolled at Michigan State, where he eventually dropped out after just three months. However, with the mentorship and encouragement of Olympic medalist Herb Douglas he not only returned to college, but eventually earned his law degree.
Jeff earned his Bachelor of Science degree in Sports Administration from St. John’s University in 1992 and his Juris Doctorate from St. John’s University School of Law in 1996. From 2002-2014, he was an Adjunct Professor of Law at St. John’s teaching various courses in Sports Law. He also served as the Deputy Director of St. John’s LL.M. program in International and Comparative Sports Law for American and Foreign Attorneys from 2012-2014.
Prior to his work in sports, Jeff was a Field Attorney for the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) in New York City. He also served as an Associate General Counsel to the American Federation of Labor-Congress of Industrial Organizations (AFL-CIO) from 1997 through 2000.
Amidst Jeff’s professional accolades he has remained dedicated to his family and faith, also serving as the leader of his church over the last 8 years. This, along with his professional experiences, has continued to help him remain grounded and encourages him to inspire young people by providing guidance and support to help them along their chosen path.
I have known Jeff for over 10 years. He is a brilliant attorney with impeccable ethics and character. It’s a true privilege to work with him.- Tom O’Connell, O’Connell Sports Management
Jeff’s combination of keen intellect and integrity is distinctive in this high stakes business of baseball. His sincere devotion to his faith and work set a standard very few can aspire to, never mind attain. I can always count on Jeff for clear, honest, and expert counsel.
David Meter, SportsMeter (Attorney/Agent)
Sports Business, Sports Law, Labor Law, Arbitration, Pursuing Your Purpose, Entreprenuership, Leadership, Career Path, Working with athletes
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