The Washington Football Team has hired Jason Wright, a former McKinsey partner and NFL running back, as its new team president. The appointment makes Wright, 38, the first Black team president in the league, as well as the youngest.
As president, Wright will lead the organization’s business divisions, including operations, finance, sales, and marketing.
“If I could custom design a leader for this important time in our history, it would be Jason. His experience as a former player, coupled with his business acumen, gives him a perspective that is unrivaled in the league,” Dan Snyder, owner of the Washington Football Team, said.
Wright spent the last seven years at McKinsey & Company’s Washington, DC office, where he was a partner in the operations practice and focused on modernizing higher education institutions, government agencies, and industrial companies. The bulk of his recent work centered on improving efficiency and service levels in university administrative operations, including HR, finance, procurement, and research administration.
Wright joined McKinsey after completing an MBA at The University of Chicago Booth School of Business. Before that, Wright spent seven years as an NFL running back, with stints in Atlanta, Cleveland, and Arizona – where he served as team captain and union rep.
Wright also holds a bachelor’s degree in psychology from Northwestern University, where he captained the football team.
“This team, at this time, is an ideal opportunity for me,” Wright said. “The transformation of the Washington Football Team is happening across all aspects of the organization – from football to operations to branding to culture – and will make us a truly modern and aspirational franchise.”
The Washington team last month dropped its “Redskins” name after 87 years, finally bowing to criticism of the organization’s usage of a racist moniker. The organization is also currently embroiled in a #MeToo scandal, with 15 women alleging that they were sexually harassed by team staff.
“Hopefully, having not grown up in [Washington’s] front office allows me to bring some catalytic thinking,” Wright told the Washington Post. “It’s the same reason organizations bring in people externally – to push the thinking, to have new, creative ways of thinking about things [and] maybe be a bit disruptive.”
Washington late last year hired Ron Rivera, making him the team’s first Latino head coach. Washington also last month hired Julie Davidson to lead its communications division, making her the first woman to be part of an NFL team’s radio broadcast.