David Barr, President of The Wembley Club, Top 10 Admired Leaders of 2023

David Barr
The Wembley Club

David Barr, President of The Wembley Club

“Constantly learning, relearning and taking action are keys in our culture.”

The Wembley Club, according to David Barr, president of the club, is the merger of exercise, friendships, and social connection. A uniquely family-friendly club, Wembley has become a second home to many of its members. In 2022, Wembley debuted The Arena, which is a state-of-the-art fitness wing that includes two dedicated pickleball courts.

David approaches every aspect of leadership with honesty, dedication, and humility. These are the most crucial traits for success at Wembley. Everyone on the team knows they're all learning, including David. Learning from mistakes is essential in the team culture. Every member of their team is actively encouraged to innovate and continuously improve their work and club structure. They are also open to trying new things, knowing that their success rate will never be 100 percent. Their approach is inquisitive, open-minded, and comparable to that of a scientist doing experiments. They admire people who own mistakes and improve. People who deny mistakes don't last long in their company.

David's ability to further his education has been significantly aided by his participation in IHRSA (the International Health and Racquet Sports Association). David is able to network with the people in the field who have the best ideas and the most experience, and he has also gained a lot of knowledge from the IHRSA members who are so kind as to offer their expertise.

There has always been a focus on the long term, and while making decisions, David projects himself 10 years into the future to choose the best course of action. He weighs two possibilities and chooses the one that will serve him best in the long run. They have always found a way to surmount any short-term obstacles along the way. He consults the leading authorities in the area to learn from them and make any necessary strategic judgments. Their team has extensive knowledge that can enlighten him about the members' cognitive processes. David has put together a great team of people who will educate him when they need to make strategic decisions.

"We means fun for the entire family! We offer over 50 group fitness classes per week, adult tennis, youth tennis, beginner tennis lessons, tennis start/restart, swimming, new fitness equipment in our gym, and an active pickleball membership."

David was driven by the desire to construct a tremendously enjoyable exercise and social center. The company's mission from day one was to establish the most positive, enthusiastic team capable of providing its members with a world-class experience. The Wembley Club was intended to be more than a fitness facility. The objective has always been to combine healthy exercise with the best social interaction so that the club becomes a central part in the lives of its members. David is also heavily involved in communications and communicates daily with their clients

Their target demographic consists of socially active, health-conscious individuals. All but a small fraction of their members are within a half-hours drive. In particular, they serve as a hub for a wide. variety of group fitness classes, pickleball, tennis, and swimming programs. The east side suburbs of Cleveland, Ohio, have well over a hundred thousand potential customers. Due to the one-on-one attention they receive at the club and the strong bonds they form with other members, the club's retention rate is far higher than average. David observes the club's activity firsthand, and as a numbers guy, he continuously monitors trends in every department. Hence, they allocate more resources to the club activities with the quickest growth.

David also recalls some of the hurdles they had to overcome as they evolved. In the first several years after acquisition, the plant required extensive expansion and modernization. In 2019, they opened a new building on-site to satisfy the need for more space, which took longer than anticipated. The space has been continuously upgraded. As demand for their area continues to rise, the upcoming obstacle will likely be how to maximize their efficiency.

When it comes to threats or challenges, they believe that operating well is the best solution. David recounts how they improved the facility during the COVID era, when many individuals left fitness clubs worldwide. After the state mandated the temporary closure of the club in 2020, their fantastic fitness director, Colleen Ryan, started Zoom fitness courses in just a few days, so the members continued unimpeded in their ability to work out. Thanks to the brilliant team, Wembley is extremely nimble as challenges and opportunities arise. David proves that they can adapt to market changes and solve obstacles.

Recreating that success in new markets will be David's primary focus during the next five years. They are putting together a team for a second location and hope to grow into more communities soon so they can show more people their unique mix of socializing, physical activity, and fun. IE


The Wembley Club


David Barr
The Wembley Club


The Wembley Club is truly like a second home for our members. As a family friendly club, we pride ourselves in providing a relaxed, fun, social atmosphere for members and their families. Our indoor tennis court building is new in 2019 and the gym has been completely remodeled with state-of-the-art TechnoGym equipment.

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