By Nan Price, Content Manager MetroHartford Alliance
Donovan Powell is Chief Operating Officer at Hartford Athletic.
DONOVAN POWELL: I arrived in Hartford with the opportunity to help bring professional soccer to the city. As Chief Operating Officer of Hartford Athletic, I lead business operations for the organization. The chance to build a club that the community can rally around and call their own is a dream that I’m fulfilling in Hartford.
HOW HAVE YOU BECOME A PART OF HARTFORD?
DONOVAN: When I talk about vision and goals for Hartford Athletic and the city, bringing vibrancy and energy is always at the forefront of the conversation. We’ve worked with the city and state to revitalize historic Dillon Stadium to its rightful place as valued community asset. We’ve also set our club headquarters downtown on Pratt Street and will be opening a retail location soon. A commitment to the city by providing experiences for our community on and off the field is an important part of our mission.
HOW HAS HARTFORD BECOME A PART OF WHO YOU ARE?
DONOVAN: I’m proud to say I live in Hartford and the club has an eagerness to embody Hartford pride. Our games start with a march that descends through the streets of Hartford to Dillon Stadium and features 90 minutes of unmatched energy by thousands of Hartford residents who are also proud to call this city home. We’re all united to make an impact in our community.
WHAT MAKES HARTFORD UNIQUE?
DONOVAN: The incredible culture and diversity throughout the community—from the Puerto Rican, Jamaican, Peruvian, and Brazilian communities to many others. We previously hosted the Puerto Rico National Team at Dillon stadium in what was the start to a series of international matches. Soccer is the most community-driven sport in the world and our club celebrates and highlights the diverse culture of our city and region.
HOW DO YOU “TELL THE STORY” OF HARTFORD?
DONOVAN: I talk about Hartford as a resurgent city; a place with an incredible amount of history and a community of people who are invested in its upward trajectory.
WHERE DO YOU SEE HARTFORD IN THE NEXT FEW YEARS?
DONOVAN: Around the city, I see a movement around art, music, sports, entertainment, local fare, and spirits, etc. I believe this movement leads to increased development/interest in the city and a continued upward flight. We at Hartford Athletic are thrilled to be a part of it.