diversity is Good Business
tbe a leader in best business practices, the nfl recognizes that diversity is a critical factor, and that it must be reflected throughout the organization, not in just one aspect of it. We want the best people in the best possible positions and give everybody the opportunity to excel.
We seek to ensure full diversity throughout our coaching ranks, executive ranks and the league office. to achieve this, we are an organization that collectively finds solutions through our commitment to innovation. the success of our league depends on it.
“the nfl engages a diverse workforce by empowering people to work productively, efficiently and in ways that everyone feels valued by the organization,” says robert Gulliver, nfl executive vice President of Human resources and chief diversity officer.
diverse ideas, opinions and critiques bring clarity and make us a better organization. as part of the nfl’s ongoing efforts to improve diversity and inclusion, we established new guidelines for the rooney rule in march 2018. clubs are now required to hold open head coaching or senior football operations positions for at least one week, during which time at least two minority candidates must be interviewed.
those responsible for the game within football operations exemplify our diversity. this group, led by executive vice President of football operations troy vincent, includes: david Gardi, svP football operations; alberto riveron, svP officiating; dawn aponte, chief football administrative officer; rod Graves, svP football administration and club services; arthur mcafee, svP Player engagement; tracy Perlman, svP football communications and marketing; and damani leech, vP football strategy and Business development.
the nfl continues to expand its system of diversity and inclusion that objectively, fairly and justly reduces subjective criteria, discrimination and embraces high standards of character, ability and shared responsibility. as we analyze our progress, we do so with a commitment to sustainable solutions that improve and perfect our high standards of excellence.
the nfl leads the sports industry in promoting diversity in hiring. several considerations play a role in our long-term success: Hiring a person to run a team, to coach a position, to oversee training, scouting, conditioning or any other matter of club operations—front office or on the field—is a social science, involving talent, trust, relationship, personality and many more tangible and intangible factors.
our partnership with Historically Black colleges and universities (HBcus) through the mid-eastern athletic conference and southwestern athletic conference is strategic. We believe HBcus specifically, and the ncaa generally, represent fertile ground to develop diverse candidates for our specialized workforce. there are great opportunities among these ranks because there is actual leverage for fairness in hiring practices through the public domain of the ncaa, equal opportunity employment and title iX protections.
the nfl-HBcu partnership demonstrates our commitment to celebrating the impact HBcus have had on professional football. it’s designed to drive awareness of career opportunities and provide access to the business of our sport. these include resources and collaboration to develop talent in officiating, athletic training, sports journalism, advocacy in sports and football operations (equipment managers, turf managers, strength coaches and video directors) through internships and workshops.
the nfl Women’s career in football forum engages aspiring executives through presentations, panel discussions, breakout sessions and networking opportunities with club and league executives and industry experts. the forum is an opportunity for women to learn about the range of opportunities in and around the game and gain experience and insight from nfl executives and football experts. since the inaugural event in 2016, nearly 50 women who participated have been hired for positions in scouting, coaching, football operations and business operations.
these activations and partnerships are vital to expanding the nfl’s qualified and diverse workforce and our longterm strategic development. the nfl’s commitment to diversity and inclusion is reflective of its pursuit of excellence as the leader in sports.
in short, diversity is good business.
rod Graves SVP Football Administration and Club Services
tracy Perlman SVP Football Communications and Marketing
dawn aponte Chief Football Administrative Officer
damani leech VP Football Strategy and Business Development
troy Vincent Executive Vice President of Football Operations
david Gardi SVP Football Operations
arthur Mcafee SVP Player Engagement
alberto riveron SVP Officiating