(February 5, 2019) Conor Clingen is a lifelong Chicago White Sox fan. Now he’s getting the opportunity to broadcast for their Class-A affiliate. An STAA member, Clinger is the new Broadcasting/Media Relations Assistant for the Winston-Salem Dash.
“With the grind of Minor League Baseball, being a fan can only be a small part of the motivation to apply for the job,” says Clingen. “After doing more research, I found that Winston-Salem is one of the most well-run organizations in MiLB.”
He’s right. The Dash led the Carolina League in attendance last season and won the Bob Freitas Award as the best Class-A organization in Minor League Baseball. “Additionally, getting the chance to work with [Director of Broadcasting and Media Relations] Joe Weil was an intriguing aspect of the job. I had heard plenty of Joe’s work through his work with the Dash and Notre Dame football’s pre and post game show,” says Clingen.
Clingen set a goal for 2019 to go after his sports broadcasting dream full-time. He learned of the Dash opportunity through an STAA job leads email. Accepting the position required him to leave a well-paying job outside of broadcasting. “I knew it would come to a point where my day job and broadcasting would come into conflict,” he says. “I had a great experience at my job, but I needed to make this jump to achieve my career goals.”
Clingen joined STAA in 2016 at the start of his senior year at Notre Dame. “Multiple
Notre Dame broadcasters had applied for the Jim Nantz Award, and [friend] Mike [Monaco] was an All-American in 2015,” Clingen recalls. “After seeing all that STAA had to offer, it was an easy decision to become a member.”
Initially, Clingen joined STAA mostly to receive sportscasting job leads. “However, after being a member I have found so much more value,” he says. “The articles, videos and prep tools are all very helpful. The best part of STAA has to be the personal advice [Owner] Jon Chelesnik is willing to give. While being realistic, Jon is always extremely encouraging and knowledgeable about every aspect of the industry.”
Clingen’s candidacy for the Winston-Salem position was boosted by assistance from several friends. “I received a lot of great advice and had outstanding references. I’d especially like to thank Mark Sasseti, Mike Monaco, and Nathan Bush. All three of these great people advocated for me, pushed me to go for this, and gave me plenty of advice along the way.”
Clingen’s advice to anyone joining STAA is to take advantage of all the comes with a membership. “Soak up every resource available to you,” he suggests. “Whether you’re updating your resume or trying to learn a new sport, STAA has what you need to prepare. Of course, I’d recommend reading every job leads email. You never know what you may find!”
(Visit Connor’s STAA Talent Page).