HEAT Original: Sybil Wilson
Sybil Wilson is a Miami HEAT institution. Her vibrant personality and style shines like no other, and it began 25 seasons ago. From the very beginning, she knew she wanted to be a part of something special, saying “When I drove past the construction of the Miami Arena every day, I used to tell my best friend that one day I would work in that building. I didn’t know how, but I just knew it.”
Prior to the HEAT, the Pace University (NY) graduate worked in a law office in the same building as the HEAT in downtown Miami. When she joined the team in 1988, her original role was administrative assistant to the team’s Vice President of Advertising and Vice President of Sales and Broadcasting. Two years later, she was promoted to Director of Customer Relations/Director of Corporate Education. Wilson worked with children in local schools and that role left a lasting impact upon her.
“A year after visiting a school, I went back and a parent told me that she didn’t know what I said to her child, but whatever it was it worked,” she said. “His behavior changed and his grades got better. In conjunction with NBA Legend Wali Jones’ Reach for the Stars Program, we developed the Stay-in-School Jam. We were able to reward 6,000 kids for improving grades and behavior.”
Looking back, she said, “I am in amazement of being here so long. We [HEAT Originals] have all grown so much in the industry and have the knowledge of all it takes to run a team! It amazes me that we ‘helped start this thing’ even with little or no experience. I will always remember the pre-opening night work and celebration; the glamor of Opening Night; seeing Cirque du Soleil for the first time as an opening night act; meeting celebrities; meeting Pat Riley for the first time (I was star struck); All-Star weekends; my first and only trip on a private plane; the championship game in Dallas; and dancing with the dancers on the court.”
Never one to sit still, Wilson recently added the role of actress to her impressive resume. A few years ago, out of curiosity, she attended a playwright’s reading. After finding out that no experience was necessary, she auditioned for “You Got Me Bent And Twisted,” just for fun, not ever thinking that she had a chance. To her surprise, she was chosen for the part! Since then, she’s acted in five plays, with her next production set for Sept. 21.