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RISE Names NBC Sports Chairman Pete Bevacqua and NFL EVP Troy Vincent Sr. As New Co-Chairs

Bevacqua and Vincent succeed former NFL Commissioner Paul Tagliabue in leading the national nonprofit that aims to end racism through sports. Tagliabue and RISE founder Stephen M. Ross transition to emeritus board status

December 27, 2022

NEW YORK - RISE, the national nonprofit coalition of major U.S. sports leagues and media networks that uses sports to eliminate racism and champion social justice, has named Pete Bevacqua and Troy Vincent Sr. the new Co-Chairs of its board of directors.

Bevacqua, the Chairman of NBC Sports, and Vincent, the NFL Executive Vice President of Football Operations, succeed former NFL Commissioner Paul Tagliabue. Tagliabue is retiring, having served as RISE Chair since 2018.

Bevacqua and Vincent have sat on the RISE Board of Directors since 2015 and were formally elected to their new roles following the organization's most recent board of directors meeting earlier this month. They will serve as Board Co-Chairs through December 31, 2024.

“As a community, sports have the unique power to transcend societal differences, bringing together players, coaches and fans of all backgrounds, races and socioeconomic differences,” Bevacqua said. “Inspiring, uniting and empowering the sports community to use their platform for social good, RISE has the power to create positive change. Our mission is bold, and I am excited to help lead this organization alongside Troy and RISE CEO Diahann Billings-Burford, as we aim to eliminate racism and discrimination.”

“RISE was founded based on the hope that sports can be a central motivator in bringing people of all races together and bridging the racial divide,” Vincent said. “RISE's work over the last seven years, coupled with athletes and sports leaders leveraging their platforms, has demonstrated both power and impact in fostering real social change. We can and must do more to bring understanding and break down barriers on the many complex facets of racial division, and through working closely with Pete, the board and RISE CEO Diahann Billings-Burford, RISE can play a pivotal role in achieving racial equity and social justice in this country."

Bevacqua joined NBC Sports in 2018 as President, and was promoted in September 2020, becoming the third Chairman in the history of NBC Sports. In this role, he oversees NBC Sports' unprecedented collection of assets and platforms, which includes NBC Sports, NBC Olympics, Golf Channel, NBC Sports Digital, and two transactional sports businesses, GolfNow and SportsEngine. Previously, Bevacqua served as CEO of the PGA of America from 2012-2018.

Vincent was a first-round draft pick in 1992 and played 15 seasons in the NFL with Miami, Philadelphia, Buffalo and Washington, making five Pro Bowl appearances with three All-Pro selections. As NFL Executive Vice President of Football Operations, Vincent holds a broad range of responsibilities for the business of football, including game analytics, accountability, integrity of the game, development and growth, and policies and procedures relating to NFL games, including protecting players from unnecessary risk.

“Troy and Pete are tremendous leaders for RISE and the advancement of our mission to end racism, and along with Paul Tagliabue have been invaluable counselors to me throughout my tenure at RISE,” RISE CEO Diahann Billings-Burford said “Under Paul's leadership, RISE has made an incredible nationwide impact in and through sports effecting real change within the industry and communities. With Troy and Pete's experience and vision, along with that of the other members of our board of directors, I believe we have the leadership in place to take RISE to the next level and make an even greater impact in advancing racial equity and inclusivity in this country. I am forever grateful to Paul, and to Troy and Pete for the sacrifices and commitment they have made to help lead the critical work of our organization.”

Additionally, the RISE board elected an Executive Committee, which will advise the CEO and be tasked with supporting key areas of operations, including sponsorships, board relations, programs and athlete engagement. Along with Bevacqua and Vincent, the RISE board members who will sit on this committee include:

  • Diahann Billings-Burford, RISE CEO (Ex officio)
  • George Casey, General, U.S. Army (Ret)
  • Dr. Stacy Tessler Lindau, Professor of Ob/Gyn and Medicine, University of Chicago
  • Max Siegel, CEO, USA Track & Field
  • Dan Towriss, CEO, Group 1001

RISE Founder and Vice Chair Stephen M. Ross, the Miami Dolphins Chairman of the Board and Managing General Partner, is also stepping down from the RISE Board of Directors. Ross has committed $30 million to the organization since its inception in 2015, including funds committed through 2023. Both he and Tagliabue have been recognized by RISE with honorary Emeritus Board designations.

“It has been a great honor to serve as the Chair of RISE,” Tagliabue said. “I take pride in the work the organization has done to combat racism and discrimination, increase civic engagement through its RISE to Vote initiative and bring together people of all backgrounds throughout the country. Sports are the ultimate unifier with the power to help create more just and equitable societies for everyone. This is the ethos of RISE, and the impact Steve envisioned when he founded the organization seven years ago. Now, under the fresh and committed leadership of Troy and Pete, I am confident RISE will continue to grow and unite communities through sports to eliminate racism, discrimination and hate.”

RISE was founded in 2015 to harness the unifying power of sport to end racism and champion social justice. It engages all levels of the national sports community - professional, collegiate, high school and youth - through partnerships and programs to create positive change on matters of race and equality. Since its founding, RISE has engaged in programming in more than 40 states, educating more than five million people and empowering nearly 500 partners across all sports.

RISE programs feature its expertly designed interactive curriculum, which increases an understanding of racial equity and builds cultural competence, and equips professional, collegiate and school-aged athletes, coaches and administrators with the tools to address matters of racism, prejudice and inclusivity. Among other sports and civic leaders, the organization's board of directors includes the commissioners and senior leadership of major sports leagues such as the NBA, NFL, NHL and NASCAR and media networks such as NBC Sports, CBS Sports, ESPN and Turner.

About RISE

RISE is a national nonprofit that educates and empowers the sports community to eliminate racial discrimination, champion social justice and improve race relations. Through partnerships and programs, RISE inspires leaders in sports to create positive change on matters of race and equality. RISE's vision is to create a nation unified through sports committed to racial equity and social justice. Follow RISE on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook @RISEtoWIN or learn more at https://risetowin.org

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