Chief Executive Officer
Nick Arison begins his 21st year as a full-time member of the HEAT organization and his 13th as Chief Executive Officer. He has been associated with successful teams on every level of basketball, and has been a part of championships with the Miami HEAT, Duke University and USA Basketball. Arison oversees the day-to-day operations of the franchise and is a limited partner in the team. He also has served as the alternate governor since the 2005-06 season and has previously served a term as a member of the NBA’s prestigious Competition Committee.
The promotion to his current position on July 22, 2011, was a natural progression for Nick, who has grown up with the HEAT. His grandfather, Ted Arison, was one of the team’s original founders and his father, Micky Arison, bought the controlling share of the franchise and was named Managing General Partner on February 13, 1995.
Arison has served the HEAT in a variety of positions over the years and has learned the business from the ground up. He initially started working for the HEAT organization as a team attendant for four seasons from 1995-99. He then served summer internships in the Arena Operations, Community Affairs and Sales and Marketing departments before becoming a full-time staff member on the business side of the organization in 2003 as an Account Manager, Premium Partnerships. In 2006, he was promoted to Director of Corporate and Premium Services where he oversaw the Account Management Team. Prior to the 2008-09 season, he was named Vice President, Basketball Operations where he worked directly with Pat Riley and Andy Elisburg on overseeing the basketball side of the organization and played an active role in the recruiting and procurement of talent. During the summer of 2010 he was instrumental in the re-signing of Dwyane Wade and Udonis Haslem, as well as the acquisitions of LeBron James, Chris Bosh and Mike Miller. In recent years he has also played a significant role in the acquisitions of Kyle Lowry, Jimmy Butler, Shane Battier, Ray Allen and Goran Dragić. A rising star in the business, Arison was selected as one of SportsBusiness Journal’s “Forty Under 40” in 2013, an award that honors the most promising young executives in sports business under the age of 40.
Under Arison’s leadership the HEAT have exceled off the court as well and continue to make an impact throughout the South Florida community. That was acknowledged by the HEAT capturing the 2022 NBA Sales and Marketing Team of the Year Award which recognizes demonstrated excellence in business performance across both key revenue drivers and operational focus areas such as people and culture, and community impact. Additionally, the HEAT was the inaugural winner of the NBA’s 2018 Inclusion Leadership Award for the franchise’s lengthy history and ongoing commitment to diversity and inclusion.
Arison was also instrumental in Miami’s foray into the growing world of esports. With the creation of HEAT Check Gaming, Miami was one of 17 NBA teams to field a team in the inaugural NBA 2K League which began play in May of 2018. In its’ first season of existence, HEAT Check Gaming capped a successful season by advancing all the way to the NBA 2K League Finals.
In addition to his responsibilities with the HEAT, Arison served as a member of the United States Men’s Senior National Team support staff from 2004-08. He assisted with the day-to-day operations for USA Basketball’s 2008 Olympic team that captured the gold medal in Beijing, China as well as the 2007 gold medal winning FIBA Americas Championship team, the bronze medal winning 2006 World Championship team and the bronze medal winning team at the 2004 Olympics.
Arison began his basketball administrative career while attending Duke University. He spent four seasons as team manager of the Blue Devils men’s basketball team and was named the head team manager during his senior year. Over that four-year span, Arison became the only team manager in Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC) history to be a part of four straight ACC Championships and was a manager for Duke’s 2001 NCAA National Championship team.
Arison, who serves on the Boards of the HEAT Charitable Fund, Project Medishare for Haiti and The Buoniconti Fund to Cure Paralysis, graduated from Duke with a degree in public policy and a certificate in marketing and management. He and his wife, Jenna, reside in Miami with their son and daughter.