David Davies hosted BBC's Newsnight (equivalent of hosting NBC or CBS nightly news) and served as CEO of the UK Football Association. He is also an OBE - Order of the British Empire - which is an order of “chivalry." David grew up in Euston Station, London, which is similar to growing up near Penn Station in NYC. It’s a very busy city neighborhood. His Mum and Auntie sold sandwiches at the back of the station.
David cut his teeth in journalism as a long-haired youth in the 60s, covering the so-called ‘troubles’ in Belfast. After his work in Belfast, David spent a number of years at the BBC, interviewing everyone from prime ministers to CEOs for Newsnight and other BBC TV shows. He then moved to the UK Football Association, further launching him as one of the most recognizable figures in the UK.
David’s “chivalrous" work includes staging a Game of Peace in the Olympic Stadium in Kabul, Afghanistan to launching anti-racism and disability awareness in sports campaigns, and a lot more. David is truly a wonderful human being and uses humor like no other.
David Davies, OBE - Order of the British Empire - which is an order of chivalry - is a legend in the UK and European sports world and a familiar name, given his time with BBC TV, working on some of their biggest shows such as Newsnight and Songs of Praise.
David grew up in Euston Station, London, which is similar to growing up near Penn Station in NYC, as a comparison. it’s a very busy city neighborhood and his Mum and Auntie sold sandwiches at the back of the station. David cut his teeth in journalism as a long-haired youth in the 60s, living in Belfast covering ‘troubles.' If you are not familiar, the troubles were a series of rifts (that got violent) between nationalists who desired to remain under British rule and unionists wanted to break off and unite with the rest of Ireland.
After his work in Belfast, David spent another 15 years in journalism in the UK for BBC TV before moving to the English Football Association as their head of communications. He rose through the ranks to eventually become CEO and, by most accounts, he was the most powerful voice of the national sport. David has also done advisory work for the International Olympic Committee and FIFA World Cup and has his hand in a number of charitable initiatives ranging from staging a game of peace in the Olympic Stadium in Kabul, Afghanistan to anti-racism in sports campaigns in the UK to disability awareness, and more.
These are the very sound reasons why he was honored with the Order of the British Empire for his chivalry. David is truly a wonderful human being and uses humor like no other. I hope you enjoy the conversation with David Davies as much as I did.
00:40 Minute Marker
Growing up in Euston Station (London) as a kid
His Mum and auntie sold sandwiches at the back of Houston Station
Cutting his teeth as radio presenter at University of Sheffield
Learned how to talk to politicians and sports folks
Having knowledge of politics was very helpful when going into sport
On being a long-haired English youth living in Belfast, Northern Ireland in the 1960s and covering the ‘troubles’ there
Transitioning into the world of sport
Joining the UK Football Association as a communications specialist
One of the lessons coming out of COVID-19 may be that we play too much (frequency) and have too high expectations of our players
What it looks like for UK clubs coming out of COVID-19, particularly since some of the clubs are feeling a serious budget crunch
Do not underestimate the damage to the advertising industry in sport
Nobody had prepared for this obviously despite Bill Gates and others discussion this type of situation
Greatest failure was never getting ‘sacked’ (fired) from the UK Football Association because it’s quite a lucrative thing to get sacked
Difference between running a sports team and a top corporation is the level of scrutiny 24/7 in sports
Royal Family and Government on holiday in August put pressure on football to keep the citizens engaged
Humor, properly used , is an underused asset in public life, sports, politics and elsewhere
On sport as a great way to see the world and experience other cultures
On having a serious illness and using travel as a recuperation tool Going to Antarctica makes him really how small and insignificant we are really are
On living in a converted cowshed