The perception that football is a sport that caters to men and boys is one that disappears more and more with each year. Factors such as the popular NFL RedZone channel and fantasy football make it easier and easier for women and men who did not grow up watching the National Football League on a weekly basis to embrace and follow the league. Even casual sports fans who do not want to take part in yearly fantasy football leagues are now able to get in on the action thanks to weekly competitions that are offered by companies such as FanDuel and Draft Kings.
The total amount of women working within the NFL should only grow and grow in the foreseeable future. Sarah Thomas made history in September 2015 when she became the first female to serve as a referee during an NFL regular season game. Jennifer Welter (pictured above) was in sports and news headlines earlier this year when the Arizona Cardinals hired her to coach the team's inside linebackers, a decision that made Welter the first female coach in the history of the league. The hope moving forward is that all teams would be open to hiring a woman to be a coach were the right situation to unveil itself.
Christina Settimi of Forbes produced a piece in September of this year about the women she described as the “NFL's Female Financial Scorekeepers,” the nine individuals who “keep financial score” for NFL franchises. Those women, as Settimi described, all had a hand in the NFL making over $11 in revenue in 2014. The NFL is, financially speaking, the best thing going today in all of North American professional sports, and the popularity of the league is at an all-time high. Somewhere, there is a young female football fan who is dreaming of one day hoisting the Vince Lombardi Trophy as a head coach. That dream could come true for her.
9 Kelly Flanagan - Jacksonville Jaguars Senior Vice President and CFO
The Senior Vice President and CFO of the Jacksonville Jaguars who is a native of the area is no stranger to the NFL. Kelly Flanagan was part of the finance team for MetLife Stadium during the opening stages of that stadium, and she thus worked with both the New York Giants and the New York Jets. Flanagan and others within the front office of the Jaguars may find themselves looking for new homes if there is any fire behind the figurative smoke created by rumors that the club could relocate to London in the future. It is a poorly kept secret that the NFL would love to have a team overseas. Will that team be the Jaguars?
8 Jeanne M. Bonk - San Diego Chargers Executive Vice President and CFO
7 Cipora Herman - San Francisco 49ers CFO
6 Jenneen Kaufman - Tennessee Titans Vice President/CFO
5 Marilan Logan - Houston Texans Vice President and CAO
4 Allison Maki - Detroit Lions Senior Vice President, Administration and CFO
3 Karen Murphy - Chicago Bears CFO and Treasurer
2 Christine Procops - New York Giants Senior Vice President and CFO
1 Karen Spencer - Seattle Seahawks CFO
Has there ever been a better time to be CFO of the Seattle Seahawks? Karen Spencer, who joined the Seahawks all the way back in 1991 and who was bumped up to her current post in 2009, is the CFO of a franchise that has been in the Super Bowl in each of the past two years. Spencer is also Treasurer for the Seattle Seahawks Charitable Foundation and for the Seattle Seahawks Women's Association. 2015 may be somewhat of a down year in that the Seahawks may not win another conference championship, but nobody should be expecting a massive decline from the club anytime soon.
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