WNBA approves Montgomery's role in new Dream ownership group

FILE - Atlanta Dream guard Renee Montgomery (21) passes the ball in the first half of a WNBA basketball game against the Chicago Sky in Atlanta, in this Tuesday, Aug. 20, 2019, file photo. Larry Gottesdiener has been approved as the head of a new three-member ownership group of the WNBA's Atlanta Dream following pressure on former Sen. Kelly Loeffler to sell her share of the team. Friday's, Feb. 26, 2021, unanimous approval of the sale to Gottesdiener means co-owner Mary Brock also sold her share of the team, which will remain in Atlanta. Gottesdiener is chairman of the real estate firm Northland. The three-member investor group also includes former Dream guard Renee Montgomery and Northland president Suzanne Abair.(AP Photo/John Bazemore, File) (Copyright 2019 The Associated Press. All rights reserved)

ATLANTA – Former Atlanta Dream guard Renee Montgomery made history on Friday as part of a three-member investor group that was approved to purchase the team.

The ownership change follows pressure on former Sen. Kelly Loeffler, a Republican who angered WNBA players with her opposition to the league's racial justice initiatives, to sell her share of the Dream.

Real estate investor Larry Gottesdiener was approved as majority owner of the team. The investor group also includes Montgomery and Suzanne Abair, president of Northland Investment Corp. in Massachusetts, the firm Gottesdiener founded.

Montgomery becomes the first former player to become both an owner and executive of a WNBA franchise. She said she would play an active role with Abair in the leadership of the team.

“I’m going to be working with Suzanne and she’s going to lead the way,” Montgomery said.

Montgomery said she first began considering her role in an ownership group after Los Angeles Lakers star LeBron James tweeted about the possibility of being part of such a group.

“That tweet prompted my mind,” Montgomery said, adding she “started to figure out if that could become a real possibility.”

She said she also was motivated by James' role in the “More Than a Vote” campaign that worked to increase voter turnout and reduce voter suppression in the Black community.