Joe Branch is currently the managing director of basketball at RocNation Sports, where he is tasked with building the firm's basketball management business. Joe works directly with 2016 1st round picks Henry Ellenson and Caris Levert in addition to 2015 1st round pick Justise Winslow, as well as assisting in the player representation of all other Roc Nation basketball clients. The Roc Nation basketball client roster includes NBA all-star Kevin Durant, WNBA star Skylar Diggins, NBA Players Wilson Chandler, Willie Cauley-Stein and James Young. Prior to joining Roc Nation, he was a principal at Landmark Sports Group, which includes players such as Kobe Bryant, James Harden and Shabazz Napier. His experience prior Landmark includes basketball operations and marketing roles at Nike and the National Basketball Association.
As a category expert in sports marketing and athlete education, Joe has served in many capacities within key sports organizations such as the NBA and Nike. As an advocate of education, Joe has taken his sports industry experience to the classroom where he serves as an adjunct professor with a focused curriculum on the business of sports, leadership, brand management and marketing at LIU-Brooklyn campus. Joe recently joined the Department of Sport Management faculty at Rice University as a part-time lecturer where he will teach SMGT 460 (Business Analysis in Sport).
Joe Branch is a founding partner of UWANTGAME Ventures and the UWANTGAME student-athlete mentor program. Joe’s life-work and passion is the non-profit arm of UWANTGAME headquartered in Brooklyn, NY. Joe established the organization to build the “Game Behind the Game” through mentorship as well as the character and career development of high school student-athletes. Students are provided programs on leadership, media/press preparation, fiscal responsibility, community service, sports psychology, and nutrition. Additionally, each student is paired in a one-on-one mentorship match with a former student athlete that can relate to and assist in the navigation of their unique concerns as they head toward college.
Recently, Joe co-created the GameBreakers initiative, which is designed to develop the sports leadership pipeline by exposing minority high school students, coaches, and parents to the sports industry. This sports “success movement” has brought together legendary coaches, professional and collegiate athletes, sports industry trailblazers, and notable business leaders to share their experiences and networks with inner-city students from New Orleans, LA to Brooklyn, NY.
In addition to his sports positions, Joe recently finished a term as Director of Youth Leaders of Emmanuel Baptist Church, where he rebranded and restructured the youth ministry to inspire and promote the positive growth of young people in the extended Brooklyn community. Through his new programming, kids have been challenged intellectually, spiritually and physically to become engaged and committed community leaders.
Joe’s own academic career began at The Kinkaid School in Houston, Texas. Upon graduating from the college preparatory school, he was recruited by Northwestern University as a member of the Wildcats basketball team. Joe played all four years with the Wildcats and also went on to serve as an Associate Student Government Senator. He continued his studies at Rice University where he earned an MBA in Marketing and Entrepreneurship and served as President of the Black Graduate School Association.
Joe currently resides in Brooklyn, New York. During his spare time, he enjoys spending time with his family, reading, working out and playing golf.