Chief Operating Officer
Location: St. Louis, MO
Mike LaMartina has never been afraid to swing for the fences.
“We will receive not what we idly wish for, but what we justly earn,” said LaMartina, COO, Ballpark Village. “Our rewards will always be in exact proportion to our service.”
A partnership between the St. Louis Cardinals and The Cordish Companies, Ballpark Village represents a groundbreaking approach to urban development, the first time a professional sports venue was master planned and fully integrated into a broader mixed-use development. Recognized for its quality, scale, creative design and impact on the community, Ballpark Village has played a pivotal role in revitalizing downtown St. Louis.
Hired as the chief revenue officer in early 2019, LaMartina brought with him more than 18 years of experience in the entertainment, marketing, media and hospitality industries. He was responsible for marketing, sponsorship and leasing initiatives for the first phase of the dining and entertainment district, as well as the $260 million expansion that was completed last year as part of the second phase of Ballpark Village.
Promoted to COO in 2021, LaMartina oversees the revenue strategy, retail leasing operations, event and property marketing, sponsorship sales, community, and brand partnerships for the development.
LaMartina’s leadership style is straight-forward: If you don’t love what you do, then you shouldn’t do it.
“It is the strength of people who are passionate about what they do, how they do it and who they do it for that drives success,” LaMartina said. “None of it rests on any one person’s shoulders and certainly not at the expense of good people along the way.”
He said the hospitality world was especially tough during the pandemic, but his Ballpark Village team was able to adapt and turn the narrative around.
“A relationship built on trust and accountability is more powerful than anything in your ability to lead, mentor and motivate your teams,” LaMartina said. “My team was able to provide a safe environment to both guests and staff alike, selling out ticketed events and showing St. Louis a fantastic time.”
LaMartina serves as an active representative for Ballpark Village with Greater STL Inc., Explore St. Louis, and the Community Advisory Committee with representatives from the NAACP, SLDC, Hispanic Chamber and SLATE. He is a board member with Girls on the Run St. Louis, the St. Louis Sports Commission, City of St. Louis Workforce Development Board, and the American Cancer Society’s CEOs Against Cancer St. Louis Chapter.
Known in the industry as reliable, humble, and consistent, LaMartina will continue to lead Ballpark Village as the premier destination downtown for entertainment and sports in 2022.
Sharing his greatest lesson in leadership, LaMartina said it has “been the sum of experience provided to me by working for various types of leaders in my career.” He added that a leader has to be willing and open to learn from anyone at any time, in any position.
“Don’t have a fear of failure — allow failures to be the greatest lessons in finding success and take risks,” LaMartina said.
In other words, don’t be afraid to swing hard.
Mike has spent 2021 training to earn his Amateur Boxing Certification and his first fight will be early in 2022. He will be fighting as "The Lama."