Danny Gilmore is a real-life Jerry Maguire. Hooked by the movie of the same name and its depiction of a sports agent’s life, it really became her career goal. She now works for 610 Sports and Entertainment Management headquartered in Houston and has been recognized as one of the first black females certified by the NBA to represent clients as an agent.
As a child growing up in Detroit, she spent the majority of her life outside playing some type of sports. Gilmore says that around seventh- and eighth-grade, sports became a huge part of her life. Although she also did ballet and some cheerleading, when she hit high school she started running track and field as well as cross country.
She recalls that this was the time the WNBA was just trying to gain recognition for women’s professional basketball; it was also a time when females interested in any part of male-dominated sports, let alone player contract negotiations, were considered a HUGE “no-no.” But Danny Gilmore isn’t someone to walk away from a challenge. She went to college at Johnson & Wales University in Miami, being graduated in 2011 with a B.S. degree in Sports and Entertainment Management. She’s now working on her master’s degree in Sports Psychology.
The best thing about making sports her career? Gilmore says because she loves it so much, it doesn’t feel like she’s working. She says she lives by the quote, “No matter what work you do, if you aren’t doing what you love then you aren’t successful.”
For eight years she worked at American Airlines Arena for the NBA’s Miami Heat and, as a 19-year-old college sophomore, she worked in the VIP/Premium department assisting premium season ticket holders who attended Miami Heat basketball games and events.
Gilmore’s special guests included music celebrities, movie stars, CEOs of huge fortune 500 companies, famous directors and even players’ families who attended games. “I was thrilled to go to work,” she said “because I knew every day was different and brought a new adventure.” It’s no wonder she says it had to be the best time of her young sports career.
After earning her undergraduate degree, Gilmore took an internship at an NFL agency and was living in New York with a group of roommates, one of whom was gay. Saying he was the funniest guy she ever met, it was when she started to learn about the LGBT community and how many of them are shunned by their families for being true to themselves by being open about their sexuality.
She and her roomie became close friends, going everywhere together. When one of their close friends was diagnosed as HIV-positive, she realized how important it was to be supportive because at the time, it was still considered an automatic death sentence. The experience led her to volunteer with various LGBT outreach programs and she still remains close to her friends she met there. Gilmore said that her agency, 610 Sports is in full support of the LGBT community.
When asked about her favorite sport, Gilmore started to laugh, saying “I love the game of football. It’s super intense and the bright lights of the stadium instantly catch my attention.” She explained that when she was a cheerleader growing up, “I cheered for football and I’ve loved it ever since,” confessing that “sometimes I feel like I’m ‘cheating’ on my first love in sports which was basketball.” She was reluctant, though, to talk about a favorite pro or college team. The closest she’d come was saying the Miami Heat because she once worked for them and the Cleveland Cavaliers because Kyrie Irving is one of her favorite players.
But there’s more than just sports to Danny Gilmore. Working out of Houston, Detroit and Las Vegas, she is a community teen mentor for the Boys and Girls Club of Southern Nevada. She’s also interested in arts and culture as well as animals, saying with a laugh that people rarely believe her when she says she loves animals more than people. In addition to loving time to play with her own dogs, she says she’s obsessed with animal welfare, doing a lot of research on how she can help animal foundations.
When asked about her role models, she says her mom is her biggest role model – “I’ve watched her raise me while working, holding a high position with a worldwide organization, volunteering at (what seemed like) a million events and charities.” Gilmore also lists her partner Corey McCoy, founder of the 610 Sports and Entertainment Management as her second role model. Calling him a true leader and one of the best men she’s ever worked around, she says that he’s guided her and shown her the business ropes.
Our congratulations go to you, Danny Gilmore, for being such an supportive and devoted community hero!
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