The The Las Vegas Raiders hired Sandra Douglas Morgan, the former chairman of the Nevada Gaming Control Board, became the team’s new chairman on Thursday. She is the first black woman to hold the position of an NFL franchise.
Morgan fills a role that has been vacant twice in the past year Front office uprising and allegations of financial misconduct and workplace dysfunction within the Riders organization. She joins the Raiders after nine months Coach Jon Gruden’s departureIn October 2021, The New York Times resigned after emails that contained misogynistic and homophobic comments before starting his second stint.
Morgan sits on the boards of Caesars Entertainment and Allegiant Travel, the airline’s parent company that owns the naming rights to the Raiders’ stadium, and last year was named vice chairman of Las Vegas’ host committee for Super Bowl LVII. Scheduled for February 2024.
“I am thrilled that Sandra has agreed to join the Raiders family,” team owner Mark Davis said in a statement. “His experience, integrity and passion for this community will be invaluable to our company.”
Since the Raiders relocated from Oakland, Calif., to Las Vegas in 2020, six of the team’s eight top executives have left or been fired with little explanation. Mark Paden resigned as team president in July 2021, and his interim replacement, Dan Ventrell, was fired in May. Ventrell later accused Davis, who had run the group for more than 50 years, of creating a hostile work environment.
Morgan said she was “honored and humbled” when Davis approached her about the position, but she also had a lot of questions for him.
“It’s no secret that the organization has faced some recent challenges,” he said during a brief news conference at Allegiant Stadium on Thursday. “But I want to be clear: I’m not here to sweep anything under the rug or avoid issues or concerns that need to be addressed.”
Morgan did not share specific details about how he planned to resolve allegations of workplace issues brought by former team employees, including financial irregularities and mistreatment of some workers. In 2021, Nicole Adams, who worked for the group’s human resources department for nearly five years, filed a complaint against the Riders with the Nevada Equal Rights Commission, alleging that the group discriminated against her because she is black and retaliated against her as she grew up. Concerns about wage differentials and unequal treatment.
“His top priority is making sure our Rider family stays strong and meeting every team member,” said Morgan. He added that Davies has “deliberately” made a lot of changes in the past six months.
Under the guidance of Mark’s father, Al Davis, the Raiders franchise broke several demographic barriers in football. Tom Flores, the first Latino head coach to win a Super Bowl, won two titles with the team in the 1980 and 1983 seasons. In 1989, the team was commissioned Art shell, the first black head coach in the modern NFL, and in 1997 Davis hired Amy Trask as the team’s head coach, the first woman in league history to hold the title. Raiders defensive end Carl Nassif became the first openly gay NFL player On the active list in 2021.
Trask, who had been with the Raiders for nearly 30 years when he resigned in 2013, noted that Morgan’s hiring would mean “another first by an organization with so many principals.” Trask also stressed the importance of Morgan’s role as a result of the team’s recent surge.
“This is an important decision for a number of reasons, including but not limited to stabilizing that status, stabilizing that system,” Trask said. “The head of the organization is in a leadership role, and that’s important. When you talk about myriad points of instability, it’s a leader’s job to steer the organization in the right direction.
Although he didn’t come up on the NFL ranks, Morgan pointed to his experience working in the sports, entertainment and gaming industries, working with large businesses and the Nevada State Athletic Commission. He grew up in the Las Vegas area, where he served as city attorney and, most recently, as part of the state’s Covid-19 task force.