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Sons of Ben President Kenny Hanson stepping down

Third president of the Philadelphia Union supporters group will resign at the end of the year.

Derik Hamilton-USA TODAY Sports

Via the Sons of Ben's Facebook page, President Kenny Hanson will be stepping down as president of the group effective December 31st. Hanson has held the position for three years, picking up when President Emeritus Matt Ansbro stepped down in 2013 after moving to suburban Dallas. Along with Ansbro and SoB founder Bryan James, Hanson is only the group's third president. During his tenure, Hanson presided over the group as it navigated two US Open Cup Finals hosted at PPL Park in 2014 and this season - both of which served as a testament to the ferocity of the Sons of Ben and the rest of the Philadelphia Union's fanbase.

It hasn't been all smooth sailing. Hanson has had to deal with fan protests both planned and unplanned, as well as the forced resignation of a board member earlier this year and other political landmines. He also presided over the passing of long time member Eric Shertz in 2014, working with the Front Office and various supporters groups throughout the world during that time. It's not easy dealing with a group as large and diverse as the Sons of Ben, however Hanson has done a most admirable job navigating the often rough seas of soccer fandom with grace.

It's unclear at the moment who will replace Hanson.

On a personal note, Kenny has always been a great person to work with and a good friend. Any time there was an issue, I knew I could count on Kenny for an honest answer. I appreciated his time and candor, and want to wish him well in whatever he does next.