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Vanessa's 20 years of experience within the Experiential Marketing and Public Relations arenas inspired the creation of The NYC Liberty Games, the first international, junior’s volleyball tournament fostering the individualism of today’s female athlete. 


Fab to Fierce, the theme of the NYC Liberty Games tournament supports the presence of the female athletes in their off-court and on-court modes as we endeavor 'To create an environment for young female athletes to recognize their potential while embracing the totality of who they are and can be.' 


"Brands market to athletes but very often forget that these athletes are GIRLS with specific needs and unique sensibilities we intend to provide brands new options for outreach, alliance, and conversation, designed for the next generation of their product loyalists." says Vanessa. This adventure symbolizes her pursuit to change the outlook of female sports from, “A second thought to second nature.”


Vanessa Abukusumo-Whitney is the founder of NYC Liberty Games – Known for creative flair, artistic expression and a hard-to-forget name, Vanessa is perhaps best celebrated for her innovative imaginative brand solutions. Her hand in hand relationships with journalists, stylists, producers, prop masters and writers allows her to create specific points of penetration to reach targeted demographics. 

To create an environment for young female athletes to recognize their potential while embracing the totality of who they are and who they can become.



To Change Female Sports Marketing From a Second Thought                              




Vanessa's journey into youth sports began with an introduction to East Coast volleyball, and the perception that it was shamefully behind the rest of the US in player talent and development. After a quick market check, she realized this incorrect perception was the force behind an almost non-existent recruitment of local athletes. What was needed was a good old fashioned re-branding.  So, she became a certified volleyball referee, chaperone, advocate, and then launched the North Atlantic Volleyball Showcase.


The N.A.V.S. combine was created with the mission of providing high school volleyball players the opportunity to exhibit their skills in front of Division 1, 2 and 3 college coaches.  The combine equips parents with the information to navigate the development and training of their own girls.  With its presence on the East Coast, local talent would finally have a venue to, as her t-shirts aptly put it, “Leave it on the Floor!”  In the seven years since its inception, the N.A.V.S. Showcase is responsible for $32.5 million in scholarship monies awarded to its participating volleyball players.


Vanessa Whitney through experience, creative ability, and know-how has successfully guided the education and volleyball careers of both of her daughters.  Anissa Whitney is a Graduate of Hofstra University and volleyball scholarship awardee. Aiyana Whitney is a professional volleyball player, HS All-American, 2-time Collegiate All-American, 2-time National Champion and Graduate of Penn State University. Up next, Vanessa will be continuing her entrepreneurial endeavors as well as concentratin on the education/sports caree of her son Khalil Whitney.

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