For millions of American youth, the professional sports dream reigns as the ‘sure shot’ from obscurity to fame and fortune. In support of two brothers’ aspirations to become NBA players, Susan Torres, a single mom, worked relentlessly to see their hopes realized. Little did she know, a niche was being carved for an entrepreneurial undertaking that would change her life. Today, Susan is the founder and CEO of Slam Dunk Bookings, a New York-based talent management agency providing work for athletes in television, film, commercial and print advertising.
As the first and only Latin female on the east coast to book athletic talent, the Queens, New York native of Puerto Rican descent, is a staunch believer that all things are possible, no matter your circumstances. Undeterred by her humble beginnings, and an unemployed single mom on public assistance, Susan appeared at every game. While immersed in the sport and inspired by “The Win,” she observed athletic confidence, passion, winning habits and the personal attributes of players. Obtaining employment at a Hallmark Card Company in later years, Susan remained focused on the game, earning her the reputation as “Basketball Mom.”
When opportunities to act in TV and film were presented to her sons, Norman and Devin, Susan’s title changed to “Manager Mom.” Having developed an ‘Eye for Talent’ with her instinct for performance, Susan began securing roles for other basketball players, family and friends. The business-minded go-getter had found her niche, not just for booking athletes in basketball roles but cultivating athletes (male, female and kids) into actors. From iconic courts in New York’s West 4th Street to Dyckman and Rucker Park in Harlem, the word spread. Getting signed by Slam Dunk Bookings for basketball roles is a game-changer.
“Dreams are what life is made of” asserts Susan, who encourages those under her tutelage to reach for the stars, “and playing basketball is one of those dreams.” It can lead to other pursuits, such as acting, modeling and sports management.” Now extending opportunities to football players and boxers as well, Susan’s work has impacted the lives of inner-city dreamers to those of celebrity status or retirees looking to launch new careers. With a trustworthy, reliable and no-nonsense work ethic, along with her nurturing and instructional attributes, Susan provides clients with quality performers.
Susan’s commitment to recruit, hire, retain and develop talent extends to professional ball-players who chose to go overseas as well. Upon their return, athletes will contact the agency for available work. Proudly, Slam Dunk has booked clients with top brands on commercials including Nike, Adidas, NY Lottery, Twitter, Google and Domino’s Pizza along with numerous other projects. In recognition of the agency’s work, Slam Dunk Bookings got featured in Slam Magazine in 2016.
While brokering deals for athletes, Susan leveled-up in 2017 and obtained a position as assistant casting director for Crown Heights, a biographical drama starring Lakeith Stanfield. In the independent feature film, Adam, Susan’s skills led to an opportunity to produce the horror thriller scheduled for release in 2019.
“There are so many aspects to this business,” Susan contends, “So, it is important to remain focused on the goal.” Providing opportunities for urban youth, aspiring athletes and professionals players to broaden their horizons into other fields remains the foremost endeavor for which Susan Torres takes very seriously. And the enterprising maverick is just getting started.
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