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Performing legal research using the NBA’s Operations Manual and Collective Bargaining Agreement. Preparing various agreements on behalf of Brooklyn’s only professional sports franchise and major arena. Supporting the Chief Legal Officer for these sports and entertainment properties. These are all dream responsibilities for many law students, but for former Cleveland-Marshall student and Great Lakes Sports and Entertainment Law Academy (GLSELA) executive assistant Christopher Harrington, these job responsibilities are not a dream. They are a small sampling of the many tasks Harrington is responsible for in his position as Manager of Legal Services for the Brooklyn Nets and Barclays Center.
“For many people sports and entertainment simply serves as a distraction, but for someone passionate about these areas I figured why not make it a bigger part of my life,” said Harrington. “I am fortunate to have the opportunity to blend my legal background with these passions to do something that I genuinely enjoy.”
After graduating from Cleveland-Marshall, Harrington began his tenure in Brooklyn as an executive assistant in the legal department at an exciting time, as the organization was preparing for Barclays Center’s grand opening. Since Harrington arrived, the organization struck an agreement to bring the NHL’s New York Islanders to Barclays Center beginning in the 2015-16 season, and won the bid to renovate Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum, the Islanders current home. Harrington has had the opportunity to work on those business developments and many others during this time of rapid growth in Brooklyn. His fine work has not gone unnoticed – the Cleveland-Marshall graduate has already been promoted twice within the organization in just over a year.
Harrington attributed landing his coveted position in the front office with the Nets and Barclays Center to “a lot of hard work and a little bit of luck.” Much of that hard work began after his first year of law school, when a tireless search for a summer position in sports and entertainment led to a summer internship with Innovative Artists Talent & Literary Agency in New York City. It was that summer when Harrington experienced the bit of luck he needed as Professor Peter Carfagna brought his courses on sports law to Cleveland-Marshall.
Harrington enrolled in both in Carfagna’s classes, and as a result of his performance he was asked to be one of Carfagna’s research assistants. When a summer associate position opened up at The Madison Square Garden Company (MSG), Carfagna recommended Harrington be interviewed for the job – a job that he ultimately landed, and that would later help him land the position in Brooklyn.
“My time at MSG was a great experience. I worked with many of the same types of agreements that I had studied and drafted in Professor Carfagna’s classes,” explained Harrington. “As a result of my participation in his classes, I was able to hit the ground running, which impressed my supervisors.”