|Born||(1969-06-07) June 7, 1969
Seoul, South Korea
|Alma mater||Houghton College|
|Known for||Owner of the Buffalo Bills,
President/CEO of Pegula Sports and Entertainment,
President of the Buffalo Bills,
President of the Buffalo Sabres
Terrence Pegula (m. 1993)
|Children||3 (including Jessica Pegula)
Kim S. Pegula (maiden name Kerr, born June 7, 1969) is an American businesswoman and, along with her husband, Terry Pegula, one of the principal owners of the Buffalo Bills in the National Football League. She is also the President of Pegula Sports and Entertainment, which is the holding company that manages the Bills as well as the Buffalo Sabres of the National Hockey League, Buffalo Bandits of the National Lacrosse League, Buffalo Beauts of the National Women’s Hockey League, Rochester Americans of the American Hockey League, HarborCenter and Black River Entertainment, an independent record label based in Nashville, Tennessee. She is by extension president of the various teams under Pegula Sports and Entertainment including the Bills and Sabres. Along with Shahid Khan, Pegula is one of only two people of non-European descent to own a franchise in the NFL.
Pegula was born in Seoul, South Korea. She has no recollection of her birth name, no record of her biological parents nor any account of her life in South Korea, only her date of birth, a secondhand account of being abandoned in the streets of Seoul at the age of five, and a DNA test that showed one of her parents was likely Japanese. She was brought to the United States and there adopted by Ralph and Marilyn Kerr on December 30, 1974. She grew up with her adopted family in Fairport, New York, a suburb of Rochester. Kim participated in cheerleading and the school band, playing bassoon. After following her brothers’ footsteps in enrolling at Houghton College, she and a roommate made plans to venture to Alaska to work near a fishing camp upon hearing there was money to be made. Unable to afford the fare, she applied for work at a restaurant in Olean, New York; while interviewing for a waitressing gig, she met Terry Pegula, who was dining at the restaurant. Terry offered her a job at his natural gas company, and they eventually entered a relationship, marrying in 1993.
Pegula was involved in her husband’s company, East Resources, from 1991 to its sale in 2010. Shortly afterwards, the Pegulas purchased the Buffalo Sabres and its two affiliated teams, the Buffalo Bandits of the NLL and the Rochester Americans of the AHL. Kim had a big influence in the planning and construction of HarborCenter, a mixed-use development next to the Sabres’ arena and part of the revitalization of downtown Buffalo. After the death of longtime Buffalo Bills owner Ralph Wilson, the football team was put up for sale. The Pegulas competed with real estate mogul (and future U.S. President) Donald Trump and a consortium of rock singer Jon Bon Jovi and key people in Toronto-based Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment for the team. The Pegulas ultimately won, making an NFL record $1.4 billion bid, all in cash.
Following the acquisition, Kim and Terry Pegula reorganized their sports franchises plus record label Black River Entertainment into a new company, Pegula Sports and Entertainment. She helped coin the term “One Buffalo” and is also involved with the NFL Foundation. The Pegulas have also donated significant amounts of money to their alma maters, including $12 million to Houghton College, which allowed it to build a new athletics complex and transition to NCAA Division III. A pronounced fan of desserts, Pegula helped formulate “One Buffalo” branded premium ice cream and cupcake products. Since its formation, Pegula Sports and Entertainment, with Kim Pegula as its president and CEO, has made several acquisitions of property in Buffalo, launched a local Regional Sports Network in MSG Western New York, and acquired a 5th professional team, the Buffalo Beauts of the National Women’s Hockey League and has an agreement to purchase a 6th, the Rochester Knighthawks of the National lacrosse league.
On May 1, 2018, after the abrupt resignation of Brandon as president of Pegula Sports and Entertainment as well as the Bills and Sabres, Pegula was installed as president over all of the Pegula Sports and Entertainment properties. With her becoming president of the Bills she became the first female team president in NFL history.
Pegula is the mother of Matthew, Kelly and professional tennis player Jessica; she is also stepmother to Terry’s two children from a previous marriage, Michael and Laura. The Pegulas have homes in East Amherst, New York and Boca Raton, Florida.