Marshall is a Sports and Entertainment Lawyer, formerly with Manning, Fulton & Skinner P.A., www.manningfulton.com , of Raleigh, NC.  He is licensed to practice law in North Carolina, New York and Connecticut.  Marshall serves as Executive Vice President and General Counsel for Champagne Tennis® Etcetera, Inc., and is recognized by the Florida Bar as an authorized house counsel.


Marshall graduated from the Law School of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, North Carolina, in 1963, and began his career with Manning Fulton and between 1964 and 1981, he practiced law in Raleigh specializing in commercial real estate transactions and construction and real estate-related complex litigation. While in Raleigh he also:


            Served as President of the Raleigh Tennis Association in 1967-1968.


          Founded the Raleigh Racquet Club in 1968, which acquired 35 acres of land, and constructed 25 outdoor tennis courts with a stadium and 4 indoor courts, a clubhouse, swimming pool and swim house.  He served as President of the Raleigh Racquet Club for 1968-1970 and as a member of the Board of Directors through 1978.


          Founded the Raleigh Tennis Foundation, a charitable foundation to support youth tennis in the Raleigh area and served as President for 1970-1975.


          Served as President of the North Carolina Tennis Association in 1973-1974 and as President of the North Carolina Tennis Foundation in 1975-1976.


          Served as President of the Southern Tennis Association in 1976-1977 and as President of the Southern Tennis Patrons Foundation in 1978.


          Served as Tournament Director of small prize money tournaments in Raleigh from 1972-1979, which included the founding of the Southern Prize Money Circuit, to organization of the United States Tennis Association Satellite and Challenger Series Tournaments which became the USTA Secondary Circuits in 1979.  He successfully negotiated with the ATP for the awarding of ATP ranking points for satellite and challenger tournaments which opened up the ranking system to new up and coming players for the first time in 1978.


          Served on numerous USTA national committees including the USTA Executive Committee (1978-1980) and as the first Chairman of the USTA Circuits Committee (1978-1980), which now supervises over 100 development level professional tennis tournaments.


In 1981, Marshall was recruited to leave Manning Fulton to serve as Chief Operating Officer (Commissioner) and in-house counsel for the Men’s Tennis Council, the governing body of the international tennis tour for men.  He was tasked to creating and staffing international offices in New York and Paris.  The Tour, which was known as the Grand Prix of Tennis, included all of the major men’s professional tennis tournaments worldwide, including the US Open, Wimbledon, the French Open (Roland Garros) and the Australian Open, and concluded each year with the Masters Tournament at Madison Square Garden in New York City.


While working for the Men’s Tennis Council (MTC) he:


            Was responsible for the drafting, administration and enforcement of the international rules of tennis, the International Tennis Code of Conduct, sponsorship and television contracts and all business contracts for the sponsorship of the Grand Prix of Tennis and the staging of the Masters Tournament in New York City.  In addition, he was responsible for the establishment of the worldwide calendar of men’s professional tournaments, the administration of the player designation system for the tournaments and for the training and certification of professional tennis officials worldwide.  He employed the first professional tennis officials, developed the first drug testing program for professional tennis and started the player pension fund.


At the conclusion of the 1989 Grand Prix of Tennis, he dissolved the MTC when in 1990, the ATP Tour was commenced with all the non- Grand Slam tournaments and the Grand Slams and the International Tennis Federation became separate and apart under their own governance.


From 1990-1995, Marshall served as Executive Director, Chief Operating Officer and in-house counsel for the United States Tennis Association (USTA), the national tennis federation of the United States, which then had 150 employees in four locations and a budget exceeding $100 million.


During his tenure he:


            Supervised all aspects of the USTA, its $100+ million budgets, employees and all of its operation.


            Served as executive to oversee the US Open, the United States Olympic, Davis Cup and Fed Cup Teams and all home Davis Cup and Fed Cup Ties. In 1990 he was also the Tournament Director of the US Open.


            Represented the USTA in the negotiation, purchase, design and improvements and upfitting of its 103,000 square foot headquarters building in Harrison, New York which involved the consolidation of offices located in Manhattan, Long Island and Princeton, including a realignment of the USTA professional staff.


            Represented the USTA and signed the 99 year lease with the City of New York for the USTA National Tennis Center in Flushing Meadows- Corona Park, home venue of the US Open Tennis Championships.  This included many of the contracts for the initial $300 million investment made by the USTA in the construction of the new Arthur Ashe Stadium and other improvements made to the Center.


            Represented the USTA with respect to all television contracts for the US Open and Home Davis Cup Ties with CBS, USA Network, ESPN and all international telecasters (the US Open is telecast in over 160+ countries).


            Represented the USTA in merchandising, publishing, sponsor, vendor and a variety of other business contracts.


In 1995, he retired as COO of the USTA, but continued to represent the USTA as outside counsel through 2009.  He negotiated and/or drafted every television contract for the US Open between 1990 and 2009, except for one, and he drafted most of the sponsorship and other business contracts for the US Open during that time.


In 1998, Marshall returned to Manning Fulton in Raleigh and resumed the representation of clients in real estate, contract and litigation matters in addition to the USTA.  While back in Raleigh, he continued his broad Sports and Entertainment practice, representing athletes, organizations and associations, sports facilities and corporations in North Carolina.  He served as the first Chairman of the North Carolina Bar Association Sports & Entertainment Law Section.


On August 15, 2005, Marshall moved to Florida and was certified by the Florida Bar under its Authorized House Counsel Rule to represent the USTA through 2009, and he is currently retired from the practice of law, except for his service as General Counsel of Champagne Tennis®.  Marshall utilizes his vast experience in the business of sports to assist with the company’s business.


Marshall was inducted into the North Carolina Tennis Hall of Fame in 1981, the Southern Tennis Hall of Fame in 1995, the Kinston/Lenoir County Sports Hall of Fame in 2010 and the North Carolina Sports Hall of Fame in 2014.

Executive Vice President and General Counsel
marshall@champagnetennis.com
117 Martellago Drive, North Venice, FL  34275
Telephone: 941-480-0265

M. Marshall Happer III