With the Super Bowl and All-Star Game coming soon, sports are taking over our televisions and social media feeds. And Shana Renee Stephenson is covering it all with television appearances and her site AllSportsEverything.com. Stephenson first realized her love of sports in high school when she preferred to watch a sports game or update her NBA draft pick log instead of heading to the mall with friends. She decided to merge her marketing savviness with her love of sports. See how she is making an impact in this industry dominated by White men and her advice for the woman that’s just not into sports.
NAME: Shana Renee Stephenson
TITLE: Founder and Editor-In-Chief of AllSportsEverything.com
HOMETOWN: New York
LOCATION: New York
The gig: I am the Founder and Editor-In-Chief of the sports blog, All Sports Everything. I recently became the host of the monthly video series, “UnManning the Game TV” and regularly contribute to Arise TV as an on-air sports personality.
The journey: I fell in love with sports in the 90s when my older brother played college football. Attending his football games was how my family bonded and on Saturdays my dad took me to the basketball court to teach me about the game. I quickly became a lifelong fan of the Knicks and Michigan’s Fab Five. While in college at Spelman, I would video record every Venus and Serena Williams tennis match if I had to miss them because of class. Since I loved sports and I had success in marketing, I eventually decided to marry the two.
Taking the leap: After I got my Masters in Sports Business and had three years of experience at ESPN, I knew that as a Black woman in sports there was an opportunity to make an impact within the industry. When I told people I was leaving ESPN, someone advised me of something I’ll never forget, “… use the letters; don’t let the letters use you.” That’s exactly what I’m doing now.
Being a Black woman in sports: The irony is that sports media is a predominately white industry and yet the majority of athletes are Black men. As a Black woman, I recognize the importance of contributing a point of view that’s often ignored. I look at my uniqueness as an opportunity to fill a void. I like to advocate for the athletes who are unfairly criticized or offer a different perspective that may not have been considered.
Her advice for the non-sports fan: Wait until after the game to get your man’s attention. Choose an off day to let him know you’d like to know more about sports. Men appreciate women who can talk sports and are open to sharing that experience with them, but only if they’re going to contribute to the viewing experience and not detract from it.
Her biggest lesson learned: When I first started working for myself, I was the quintessential example of being a “Jane of all trades and master of none.” I worked as a sports marketing consultant, managed athletes, produced a documentary, launched my blog and taught sports business to high school students, but I ultimately struggled to master any of these projects. With the tough love and guidance of my brother and father, I was encouraged to focus on one project. The blog was the most promising project so that’s where I shifted my attention.
Her boss accessory: My natural hair. Whether my hair is out in a big beautiful full fro or the short tapered cut I’m currently rocking, it helps me standout in a crowd and get noticed. I love that!
Her beauty products: I’m a fan of nail polish, eyeliner, mascara and red lipstick. Nothing screams confidence more than rocking a bright, bold lip.
Her tech must-haves: My go-to apps are Zite and Flipboard to read up on the most current sports news stories, Pocket to save stories to read later and the sports app of all major leagues.
Her superpower: Prayer.
Her theme song: “Electric Lady” by Janelle Monae.