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Washington Football Team continues to break diversity barriers

When the Washington Football Team hired Coach Ron Rivera, he made it clear that he wanted to change the organization’s culture. This vision extended to both on and off the field. From there, the Football Team began leading the way with historical hiring decisions.

The Football Team started their new path by appointing Julie Donaldson as the Senior VP of Media and Content, which also made her the first female to be a regular on-air member of an NFL radio broadcast booth. Washington also followed up with the appointment of Jason Wright as Team President. That role made him the first black president of the team in NFL.

The trend of breaking diversity barriers has continued with the recent naming of Martin Mayhew as Washington Football’s new General Manager. Mayhew and Wright are the first black general manager and president combination in the NFL.

Mayhew joins Washington with 20 seasons of NFL experience as an executive, including eight seasons as the general manager of the Detroit Lions. He returns to the franchise that he played for from 1989-92 and was a member of the Super Bowl XXVI team.

“Martin is a proven general manager who will bring a wealth of knowledge and experience to the organization,” said Head Coach Ron Rivera. “He will be an integral part of running the daily football operations and will allow me the opportunity to focus more on coaching.”

“He impressed both myself and Mr. Snyder during the interview process and we both believe he will be a tremendous fit here,” Rivera continued. “He is a man of high character and integrity and was part of the rich history and tradition of this great franchise as a member of the Super Bowl championship team in 1991.”

Mayhew spent the previous four seasons with the San Francisco 49ers, most recently as the club’s vice president of player personnel. He held the position of senior personnel executive for the franchise from 2017- 18.

He assisted first-time general manager John Lynch and was a major contributor for a personnel department that was vital in the team’s Super Bowl appearance in 2019.

To keep the good news coming, the Washington Football Team is promoting Jennifer King to a full-time offensive assistant after she spent this season as a coaching intern. King will become the first full-time African-American female coach in NFL history.

The 2020 season was King’s first coaching stint after she spent 2018 and 2019 interning in the offseason and during training camp for the Carolina Panthers. She worked primarily with running backs coach Randy Jordan.

Earlier this month, King made history alongside Bucs assistant defensive line coach Lori Locust and assistant strength and conditioning coach Maral Javadifar as the first female coaches on both sidelines during a playoff game.

As the league struggles to hire qualified black coaches, it is refreshing to see the Washington Football Team be a leader in diversity and inclusion.