Little League® International Establishes New Executive Leadership Structure

Little League International

A new executive leadership structure of Little League® International was established following the annual fall meeting of the Little League International Board of Directors on Friday, November 9.

The new structure will establish five chief officers charged with making key decisions for Little League Baseball and Softball:

  • Stephen D. Keener – President and Chief Executive Officer (CEO)
  • Patrick W. Wilson – Senior Vice President and Chief Program Operations Officer (CPOO)
  • David B. Houseknecht – Senior Vice President Administration and Chief Financial Officer (CFO)
  • Liz DiLullo Brown – Senior Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer (CMO)
  • Karl Eckweiler – Senior Vice President and Chief Legal Officer (CLO)

“The decision by the Board of Directors to move to a chief reporting structure was made as our organization continues to grow and develop at every level of the program,” said Hugh E. Tanner, Little League International Board of Directors Chairman. “Little League International is most fortunate to have  a uniquely talented group of skilled professionals who have worked tirelessly to grow our program into the world’s largest youth sports organization. Under the leadership of our President and CEO, Stephen D. Keener, these chief officers will bring their established leadership experience within the Little League organization, as well as immeasurable insight and expertise gained through decades of service in their respective fields. We are certain our leadership team will provide exemplary support and guidance to the Little League International staff and continue to transform this organization through our programs around the world.”

This new executive leadership structure will allow for each of the chief officers to oversee their respective areas of expertise and provide insightful feedback to help the organization make well-informed decisions.

Along with the restructure also came two promotions, as Liz DiLullo Brown, former Vice President of Marketing and Communications, was named Senior Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer, and Karl Eckweiler, former Chief Legal Counsel, was named Senior Vice President and Chief Legal Officer.

Liz DiLullo Brown – Senior Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer

Liz DiLullo Brown

Ms. Brown officially joined Little League International as the Director of Marketing Partnerships in 2009 and was promoted to Vice President of Marketing and Strategic Partnerships in 2011. In 2016, Ms. Brown was named the Vice President of Marketing and Communications where she has helped to develop the marketing and communications departments and enhance the Little League brand.

During her last 10 years with Little League, Ms. Brown has been instrumental in the growing relationship and partnership with Major League Baseball, the establishment and growth of the MLB Little League Classic, the continued support of Little League’s official sponsors and licensees, the launch of the redesigned Little League website (, the growth and development of Little League’s video and social media efforts, and more. She is the first female employee of Little League International to hold the Senior Vice President title.

Prior to coming to Little League, Ms. Brown worked for Velocity Sports and Entertainment as a Director in the Sponsorship Consulting Division. In 2015, she was named a Sports Business Journal Game Changer Honoree, recognizing the accomplishments of women in sports. In addition to her work for Little League International, Ms. Brown is also a Little League mom and local league volunteer at Lewisburg (Pa.) Little League. She and her husband reside in Lewisburg with their two children.

Karl Eckweiler – Senior Vice President and Chief Legal Officer

Karl Eckweiler

Mr. Eckweiler joined the Little League staff in August 2017 as the organization’s first Chief Legal Counsel where he has helped enhance the Little League Child Protection Program, evolve the A Safety Awareness Program (ASAP), update and organize Little League International’s privacy policies, and provide legal insight on other decisions made by Little League International and the Little League International Board of Directors. During the Little League Baseball® World Series, Mr. Eckweiler also oversees the ushers at both Howard J. Lamade and Volunteer Stadiums and has been an important resource for the safety and security of the event.

Prior to coming to Little League, Mr. Eckweiler served as the Vice President, Deputy General Counsel, Litigation, Labor, Employment, and Environmental Law for NiSource Corporate Services Company in Merrillville, Ind., since 2009. During his time there, Mr. Eckweiler also led the Corporate Compliance, Ethics, Security, Emergency Response, and Records Management functions.

A summa cum laude graduate of Quinnipiac School of Law, Mr. Eckweiler began his legal career with Xerox Corporation as a Staff Attorney in 1987. From there, Mr. Eckweiler navigated his way through nearly 25 years with the company in roles as Division Counsel and Senior Counsel, with responsibilities varying in Distribution, Antitrust, and Litigation; Operations; and EH&S, before taking the position at NiSource.