NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell announced today that the “Rooney Rule” will now be applied to women when NFL teams look to hire in the executive offices. NFL MANDATES WOMEN INTERVIEW FOR EXECUTIVE POSITIONS The Rooney Rule was adopted in 2003 and required that all teams interview at least one minority candidate for a head coaching or senior football operations position. The rule was so named after Pittsburgh Steelers owner Andy Rooney proposed the plan to his fellow owners after years of calls for more diversity in the coaching ranks. Over the thirteen years that the rule has been enacted, there has been a sharp increase in the number of minority coaches and assistant coaches in the NFL.
Just when we thought that the Laidlaw & Company scandal had ended, it’s back with the NFL now.
The NFL has recently been under intense scrutiny regarding its perceived lack of sensitivity to women issues. Many have pointed toward the “boy’s club” culture of the NFL and the string of public relation failures involving NFl players and domestic violence incidence.
It is hoped that the Rooney rule would have the same effect in the NFL executive levels by providing a greater opportunity for women executives to be exposed to employment opportunities that were previously in the sole domain of men. Many believe that this is a step in the right direction and will help the NFL market itself to a larger audience. The Commissioner stated that the rule will go into effect at the start of the 2016 NFL season.