In 2001, Robert was an employee of a company with offices in the World Trade Centers. On the morning of 9/11, he was late to work and arrived to see a gaping hole in the side of the building almost exactly where his offices were. On that day, 300 of his colleagues were killed in the terrorist attacks.

Before the attacks, Rob had been working on an idea to create a community of recreational sports players. During a beach vacation 3 months after the attacks, and still dealing with the shock of the events, he looked at his cocktail glass which was exactly half full. Chuckling to himself, he knew it was time to start looking at the positive side of the events. He had met his fiancé playing co-ed softball, recently stopped traveling for work and started playing recreational sports again, and loved the camaraderie of playing on a team. He knew that community-oriented sports would be a way for him to heal and help the city heal as well. In that moment, he made the commitment to himself to pursue his vision.

Soon after, he set out to create a social sports league for young professionals with a charity focus. His vision was to foster real personal connections with in a caring community infused with a sense of play.

In 2002, 9 months after 9/11, Zog Sports was launched and quickly took off. To spread the vision, Rob would speak to his players before they started their games. Often this meant telling his story and sharing his vision, hour after hour to groups of 20 players before they went on the field.

In addition, the focus on charity was new to the recreational sports industry. It was not until the launch of Zog Sports that other companies began to give back to the community. This is now a trend which has permeated the industry.

Since founding the company, Rob has kept a total focus on manifesting his vision in the culture of the company. In Rob’s words, “The vision lives in the company culture. Internally, we’re a caring community”. According to his nominator, “I’ve seen him be so methodical about having the right people on board. He’s always been very concerned about forming the right culture. More than anyone, he hires for fit, but he also fires for fit. That’s a trait missing in a lot of CEO’s. It has guaranteed that his vision has infused his whole company, all 400 people. He’s had lots of opportunities to go in different directions, to take money that might take him away from the vision but he’s turned them down. I’ve been impressed by his singular focus on building the company culture, and it takes incredible focus and discipline to achieve that over so many years”.

Rob’s vision has resulted in him build a huge community of socially conscious recreational sports players. He currently has operations in 6 cities (and is the largest recreational sports company in 4 of those 6 markets). Approximately 120,000 people played in his leagues in 2016 and together they have donated $3.4 million to charity.

Rob has distinguished himself with exemplary vision that has manifested in a community of 120,000 people spanning 6 cities, and has paved the way for socially conscious behavior in his industry.