Patti Phillips a Speaker at the NFL Women's Careers in Football Forum


January 24, 2018
Contact: Rachel DeSchepper
Women Leaders in College Sports

Catherine Boyle


Kansas City, Mo.—Women Leaders in College Sports (formerly NACWAA), the nation's premier women's athletic leadership association, announces that its CEO, Patti Phillips, will be a speaker at the NFL's second-annual Women's Careers in Football Forum the weekend of the Pro Bowl, Friday, January 26 and Saturday, January 27, 2018 at ESPN Wide World of Sports in Orlando, Florida.

According to the NFL, 50 women were selected from among more than 400 applicants to attend the forum, which will feature panel discussions, breakout sessions, and networking sessions. The goal of the event is to, "educate and prepare women for careers in Football Operations, including coaching, officiating, scouting and football front office positions."

"More and more women are breaking barriers and working in the sport and business of football, in various capacities," says Phillips. "We credit the NFL with helping in this area by hosting this forum, which will help connect and educate women about getting jobs within football programs at all levels."

Says Samantha Rapoport, Director of Football Operations at the NFL: "We are honored to have Patti Phillips speak to the participants at the NFL Women's Careers in Football Forum at Pro Bowl. Patti is a true leader in the development of women in sports, and the NFL's relationship with Women's Leaders in College Sports is critical to its efforts to increase the number of women working in collegiate and professional football programs."

At the 2017 Women Leaders National Convention in Dallas, Texas, held this past October, Women Leaders hosted panels geared toward educating women who want to work in football, including a Power Panel titled "We Know How to Manage Football." Vicky Chun, vice president and director of athletics at Colgate University, Sandy Barbour, athletic director at Penn State, Bill Hancock, executive director of the College Football Playoff, and Monica Lebron, deputy athletics director at Tulane University, participated on the panel. Both Chun and Barbour sit on the NCAA DI Football Oversight Committee.

"I am very excited to be part of this forum-which I hope will be just the first of many events we have in relationship with the NFL," Phillips says. "They will benefit all of our members looking to advance at every level of the sports industry."

Additional speakers and panelists of the forum include:

  • Canadian Football League (CFL) Commissioner Randy Ambrosie
  • NFL Chief Football Administration Officer Dawn Aponte
  • Glazer Family Foundation Co-President Darcie Glazer Kassewitz (Tampa Bay Buccaneers)
  • San Francisco 49ers Chief Strategy Officer and Executive Vice President of Football Operations Paraag Marathe
  • Atlanta Falcons Assistant General Manager Scott Pioli
  • CFL Toronto Argonauts General Manager Jim Popp
  • NFL Director of Football Development Samantha Rapoport
  • Stanford University Head Coach David Shaw
  • Minnesota Vikings Chief Operating Officer Kevin Warren

About Women Leaders in College Sports

Founded in 1979, Women Leaders in College Sports (formerly NACWAA; is the only nationally recognized collegiate professional membership organization whose mission is to develop, connect, and advance women leaders working in intercollegiate athletics. More than 3,500 members strong, Women Leaders promotes the growth, leadership, and success of women as athletics administrators, conference commissioners, professional staff, coaches, and student-athletes.