“Catherine Carlson was surprised when she scanned the room at her first executive meeting as a senior vice president with the Philadelphia Eagles this spring.
“I’m looking around,” she says. “And there are four other women at the senior leadership table.”
The Eagles front-office is an outlier in a sports world in which most jobs, especially high-ranking ones, are still held by men. Even though women make up nearly half of NFL fans, only 35% of jobs in the league office are held by women, according to the latest report from The Institute for Diversity and Ethics in Sport at the University of Central Florida. That number drops to 29% when it comes to senior executives.
The numbers are even lower at the team level. NFL franchise employees were only 28% women last year, and 18% at the VP-level and higher. Only 23 of the league’s 32 franchises reported employing more than one woman vice president last year.
But in Philadelphia, more than half of owner Jeffrey Lurie’s top advisers are women—and that makes them a leading exception in the NFL.”
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