The Lifetime Benefits of Mentorship

By Ellen Lucey | Director, Formerly Coca-Cola

Participants at a WISE Within session

Ellen Lucey leading the discussion at WISE Atlanta's Speed Mentoring Roundtables event.

Mentoring has been a major part of my life dating back to my first job, during which Kelly Feike took me under his wing and shared his insights on building a successful career. I attribute my professional foundation to him, but there were many others who were willing to advise me — Kristen Stimmel, Leslie Bolick and Bill Wunder, to name a few. They each taught me important lessons about working, such as "keep your cool" and "provide solutions instead of just identifying the problem." Collectively, these early mentors challenged me to be better every day, and fortunately, I was able to recognize the value of their support. 

As I left my first job to work for The Coca-Cola Company, I was armed with some experience, but still had a lot to learn. At Coca-Cola, I was fortunate to come across Adam Seever and Bea Perez, both of whom further molded my career. Most recently, at Bauerfeind USA, Warren Colter has stepped into that mentor role. These professionals have been instrumental in showing me how to refine and blossom as a contributor to the business. 

Paying it Forward by Mentoring

My participation in the WISE Within mentor program is due entirely to these friends. I truly feel I have a debt to repay for all their work and guidance. learning from mentors provided me with a fresh perspective during each stage of my career. As a mentee, I was eager to take advice from those who had gone before me. Now, I take pride in helping others navigate the sports world. To be clear, it is not a one-way street. I learn just as much from each oof my mentees as I try to impart on them, and I get the added benefit of growing my network with exciting new people. 

From Strangers to Friends

When the program begins, we are strangers partnered together, but by the end of the program, there is a friendship that typically continues for years to come. The mentor/mentee relationship is a special one that requires trust and cooperation, and when each person fully commits, the result is an enriching experience for parties. 

Mentoring will be a part of my life forever. I am just happy WISE Within provides a vehicle to assist me in connecting with new professionals who I will watch grow to reach milestones each year. 

Ellen Lucey

About Ellen Lucey

Ellen Lucey, a seven-time WISE Within mentor, is the director of consumer and sports marketing at Bauerfeind USA, an athletic brace and support company. She is working to build the business directly with consumers. During her 21 years in the industry, Lucey has held various executive management positions within sports and entertainment, including at The Coca-Cola Company, where she was responsible for developing and managing the company’s relationships for soccer, football, baseball, basketball and NBA All-Star LeBron James. Lucey, a 2006 recipient of the SportsBusiness Journal’s Forty Under 40 Award, graduated with a degree in sports marketing from Indiana University, where she captained the swim team her junior and senior years and set several school records. She and her husband, Stefan Manford, reside in Smyrna, Georgia, with their children, Quinn and Norah.

The opinions expressed are those of the author(s) alone, and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of WISE or any employees or affiliates. WISE makes no representation as to the accuracy, completeness, validity, or usefulness of any of the information supplied by the author(s). WISE will not be liable for any errors or omissions in the information or any losses, injuries or damages arising from its use. Publication of the information should not be considered endorsement by WISE. By using this website, you accept this disclaimer in full.

Content and the contributor’s title, company and other biographical information were accurate at the time of publication and may have since changed.