Denver Broncos Adds Condoleezza Rice to Owners Group

The Denver Broncos on Monday announced the addition of former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice to a new group of team owners.

Rice is the second black woman to join the group, which is made up primarily of members of the Walton and Penner families, who made their fortunes largely through their stakes in Walmart. The partnership already included Mellody Hobson, co-CEO of Ariel Investments and chairman of the board of directors of Starbucks Corporation.

The group has reached tentative agreement in June to buy the Broncos for $4.65 billion, more than double the previous record for an NFL franchise. The purchase is expected to be approved before the start of the 2022 regular season.

The league denied this claim.

The NFL has introduced a number of measures to increase diversity in leadership positions, including the launch of a six-member diversity advisory committee in March to review its policies, and extension of Rooney’s rulea league-wide guide to increasing the number of interviews for various head coach candidates and senior positions such as general manager and team president.

Jason Wright became first president of the black team when he was hired by the Washington Commanders in 2020. Last week, the Las Vegas Raiders hired Sandra Douglas Morgan as team president. first black woman to hold office.

But increasing diversity among the league’s overwhelmingly white owners has been more difficult because teams rarely change owners and their high prices limit potential buyers. In February, NFL commissioner Roger Goodell expressed hope that the Broncos’ new owner would include a player of color. At their annual meeting in March, the league’s owners said that potential ownership groups would be favored if they included “a diverse range of individuals who will have a significant interest in and participate in the equity of the club, including acting as the club’s controlling owner.” . ”

Hobson and Rice are the first two black women to own part of the team, although black men or women have never been the primary owners of the team. There are only two people of color who own a majority stake in NFL teams – Shahid Khan of the Jacksonville Jaguars, a Pakistani-American, and Kim Pegula, a Korean-American co-owner of the Buffalo Bills.

Several other NFL teams are predominantly owned by women, but in all of these cases, their ownership shares were acquired through inheritance or marriage.