Tim Mead speaks to the Angelswin.com gathering at Tempe Diablo Stadium (2007)
By Chuck Richter – AngelsWin.com Founder & Executive Editor
“I do what I do because I love it, and the same applies to you, also. Personal recognition is not a goal in comparison to the satisfaction of assisting others.”
Those are the words from the Angels Vice President of Communications Tim Mead after a recent exchange I had with him. In a moment, we’ll look at what he means when he says “the satisfaction of assisting others,” but first a little background on Tim.
Tim is a native of Athens, Greece. He was adopted at six months old and lived in England for two years before moving with his adoptive family to the United States. He graduated in 1980 from Cal Poly Pomona with a Bachelor’s Degree in Communications. Tim talks about the time when he first started out with the Angels.
“When I went to college, I actually wanted to be a writer. After I realized I wasn’t going to play, I wanted to be a beat writer for a Major League team. As an intern in 1980, a particularly bad year for the Angels, I got an insider’s viewpoint of the relationships between the athletes and the members of the press. I did not think I would have had the fortitude to ask those tough questions of people. That wasn’t part of my makeup. I decided to try a different route and the Media and Public Relations departments were best suited for my likings.”
With nearly 30 years in the organization, Tim has held the position of Vice President of Communications for the last 10 years, previously holding positions as Assistant General Manager, Vice President of Media Relations and Assistant Vice President of Media Relations. As Director of Media Relations, he was awarded the Los Angeles/Anaheim Chapter “Good Guy” Award in 1985 and 1990. In 2000, he received the Robert O. Fishel Award for Public Relations Excellence in Major League Baseball. He became the 20th recipient of the award in his 20th season with the Angels. In the process, Tim had his name placed on a plaque with previous winners in baseball’s Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, New York.
Tim has a warm spot in his heart for those who serve our country and in April 2002 he took part in the Joint Civilian Orientation Conference (JCOC), designed by the Department of Defense. He was one of 60 civilians chosen by the Pentagon to attend the conference, traveling to the Pentagon, Norfolk Naval Air Station in Virgina; Sheppard Air Force Base, Sheppard, Texas; Fort Bragg and Camp Lejeune, N.C.; and Ofutt Air Force Base in Omaha, Neb., to see the United States Strategic Command Center. The trip featured briefings and meetings with key military generals, admirals and enlisted men and women from each branch of the service. The trip is designed to present a clearer picture and understanding of the military to civic and community leaders across the country.
Tim is also a Member of the Board of Directors for the Orange County Sports Youth Association and assists other charitable groups such as Amigos de los Niños and Second Harvest Food Bank of Orange County. Mead also serves on the advisory committee for the Sports Management Program at Long Beach State and the Dean’s Advisory Board for the College of Communications at Cal State Fullerton. He and his wife Carole have one son, Brandon, and reside in Diamond Bar.
Assisting others is truly one of Tim’s best qualities. Tim talked to us awhile back about what it has been like working for the Angels over the years:
“I never consider a day with the Angels as work. I’ve been both blessed and fortunate with this work. There are a lot of people, players who taught me early on that I have so much respect for today.
“Being with this organization has not just been a job, but the journey has been a long road. The evolution in adulthood, from 22 into my 50s; I’ve watched death through this organization. The longer you’re someplace, the more it becomes a part of your life.
“The game within the game has had a profound effect on me. I’ve watched the beauty of it all. I owe baseball everything, baseball owes me nothing; we are just caretakers for an absolute priceless establishment. I hope I can walk out on my own terms and I hope they can say, “He bled for the Angels” when I leave. That’s my hope. In the end, that’s all I really care about. I know how hard people have worked, even in some of the failures or disappointments. I witnessed hard working men and women within the organization that gave it their all and I have the utmost respect for them.
“I wish people would put sports into perspective, the role that it has in its community, the people in the organization, the players that have made an impact in a positive way behind the scenes — so much goes unseen. I’m proud of the people I work with and they care.”
Those of us at Angelswin.com are proud of you, Tim. We’re proud of how you’ve represented the Angels so well over the years. We’re proud that you’ve not only worked and survived under three different owners, but that you were esteemed highly by all — including our current owner, Arte Moreno. We’re humbled as the team’s fan site that when you address the Angels fans at one of our Angelswin.com events it’s as if the event was as important as a Major League ballplayer getting introduced to the media at one of your press conferences.
On a personal level, I’m honored by the friendship we have. As you started your career with the Angels in 1980, I became a fan of the team a year earlier in 1979, at the age of 9. Now, it’s 30 years later, and last year, the man that taught me so much about the game and passion for baseball, my father, passed away on Thanksgiving Day. After you were alerted of the news two days later, you called to offer condolences, prayers and heartfelt words in a time of grieving — on behalf of the entire Angels organization.
We’re obviously not the only ones proud of Tim’s accomplishments. No, we’re not the only ones who have been blessed by his vast knowledge of the history of the ball club. It isn’t just us at Angelswin.com who have witnessed his integrity, professionalism and work ethic. There are countless people who Tim has impacted in a positive way over the years. We caught up recently with just a few of them who have worked with Tim to see what they had to say about the man who finds “satisfaction in assisting others.”
Dennis Kuhl, Angels president of operations: He’s our archive guy. Every time we have a question on a player or anything, we go to Tim and Tim doesn’t even have to look it up. He knows. He has a wealth of knowledge. You’d never meet a nicer guy in your life. Sometimes I tell him “You’re too nice.” (laugh) He’s been unbelievable with handling the alumni, unbelievable with all of the milestones and knowing the players. He’s a great asset. He’s so involved with the community; he’s loved by everybody here. He’s a true Angel.
Mike DiGiovanna, Angels beat writer from L.A. Times: I have known Tim for 25 years at least. He is a true professional in every sense of the word. I think what makes him really good at his job is that he’s obviously employed by the Angels and he’s always looking out for their interests, but also he’s always been an advocate of the writers and the media — and that’s a fine line to walk sometimes — and he’s kept both sides fairly pleased for a long time. So, you know if he’s survived in this business for as long as he has, he has to be really good at what he does.
Bill Plunkett, Angels beat writer from the Orange County Register: Tim is the best. I first met him more than 20 years ago and his professionalism and good nature have never changed — even as my employer, job description and circulation did. He treats everyone with the same level of respect. We’ve solved the problems of the world (and the media, in particular) over many a press box meal and I only hope the Angels realize what an asset they have in Tim.
Abe Flores, Angels Player Development: Tim’s three decades of professionalism and service to the Angels is immeasurable. He is a positive and honest sounding board to players, coaches and front office staff. Plane and simple, he is one of the best at what he does in Major League Baseball and is an asset to the organization on a daily basis. I have always appreciated his patience, insight and advice for the last seven years.
Eddie Bane, Angels director of scouting: Tim Mead is the Angels. Arte Moreno came along and made the Angels a model organization, and Tim Mead has always been a great face for the Angels. Tim is a great person also in the media department and as a friend.
Bill Shaikin of the L.A. Times: Tim is the epitome of class and professionalism. He has represented the Angels so well for so long that you think of Tim when you think of the Angels, just as you think of Gene Autry and Jimmie Reese and Jim Abbott and Tim Salmon.
Rob Goldman, author of “Once they were Angels”: Having been around Major League Baseball for more than three decades, I can unequivocally say that Tim Mead is one of the finest men in the business.
For me personally, Tim has been a godsend. Before writing “Once They Were Angels,” my experience with the team had been primarily in the clubhouse. Although I was a relative novice to writing, Tim and his staff were always there with the needed phone number or press pass to keep the process moving. Having Tim on board meant that the Angels had my back and for that I am eternally grateful.
Tim has many great attributes, but perhaps his best is his ability to empower others to help reach their goals and aspirations. This quality is rare in any enterprise and Tim does it with a sincerity and enthusiasm that is infectious. The Angels are truly fortunate to have someone of his caliber in the front office. I am equally fortunate to have someone of his character and integrity as a friend.
Jeff Biggs, Angels AM 830 host of “The Biggs” show: Not only is Tim Mead the best in baseball, he’s an even better person! As you know, the legendary broadcasters we’ve had here in Southern California have blessed us all: Vin Scully, Chick Hearn, Dick Enberg and Bob Miller. But for those of us who have been fortunate enough to work in the media, Tim is a true Hall of Famer. I’m lucky to know him. Angel fans are lucky, too!
Jennifer Hoyer, Tim Mead’s secretary: I’ve been working for Tim for three years, so this will be my fourth season with him. I’m embarrassed to have my name mentioned in an article, but I will say that I feel very blessed to learn from him and be associated with him. He works hard, he gives everything he has every day and he is also one of the most quality human beings I know.
When people tell me what a great guy I work for, I can respond with 100 percent honesty that, yes, he really is that genuine of a person and he really is that easy to work for. I’m lucky, he’s a great boss and I really respect him both as a person and professionally.
Dan McKechnie, Angelswin.com member: “I first met Tim when I was working with Anaheim Sports and doing commercials for the Mighty Ducks. Tim was very helpful when I was doing some Angel projects way back when.
Tim helped us get a suite for our posting group (the old L.A. Times Angels Forum) back in ’99. I remember Tim stopping by and speaking to our large group of Angels fans, which included Chuck and myself. Shortly after the visit, the Halos rallied against the Tigers with a Spiezio blast in the ninth off closer Todd Jones. We were all jumping up and down in the suite like a bunch of kids.
I’ve sat in Tim’s office and talked over pictures of his favorite Angels (Jim Abbott and Jimmy Reese) and other baseball stories. Tim is so giving of his time. Whenever I think of the Angels front office, I think of Tim and how very lucky we are to know him. He exudes what Angel baseball is all about.
The testimonies above and legacy Tim Mead has built during his walk of life have inspired many, including myself. As Dennis Kuhl said “he’s a true Angel.”
When thinking of Angels baseball as a fan or professional in the business, who are the personalities that come to mind? To some, it may be a ballplayer, perhaps their all-time favorite Angels player. To others, perhaps a manager, say Mike Scioscia. Maybe to another it’s the greatest owner this franchise has ever had in Arte Moreno. All of those choices are solid and would make anyone think of the Angels in a positive light.
For this writer and fan of the club for 30 years, it’s simple: The face of Angels Baseball will always be the man who finds satisfaction in assisting others — the Angels vice president of communications, Tim Mead.