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Raiders Make History, Hire First Black Woman President

  • Sandra Douglass Morgan previously served as chair of the Nevada Gaming Control Board.
  • She will be the third different person to serve in that role for the Raiders in the last 12 months.
Kirby Lee/USA TODAY Sports
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The Las Vegas Raiders announced former Nevada Gaming Control Board chairwoman Sandra Douglass Morgan as the team’s next president on Thursday.

Morgan becomes the first Black woman to serve as a team president in NFL history, and she’s the third different person to serve in that role for the Raiders over the last 12 tumultuous months. 

“I have been the first in other positions that I have held … and I definitely never want to be the last,” Morgan said at her introductory news conference at Allegiant Stadium. “The impact that this has had is not lost on me. I want to to tip my hat to the prior women who were leaders and visionaries. If I could be an inspiration or help open doors for any other women out there, that would be an incredible accomplishment for me.”

The position has been vacant since the firing of Dan Ventrelle in May. Ventrelle had served as interim president since last July after Marc Badain unexpectedly resigned

Ventrelle, who had served in various roles as a lawyer with the team for nearly two decades, alleged he was fired for informing the NFL about hostile workplace concerns that had gone unaddressed. Beyond the front office turnover, head coach Jon Gruden was forced to resign last October after a series of racists, homophonic and misogynistic emails surfaced.

“It’s no secret that this organization has faced some recent challenges, but I wanna be clear I am not here to sweep anything under the rug or avoid problems or concerns that need to be addressed,” Morgan said.

Morgan grew up in Las Vegas and she was the first Black City Attorney in Nevada, a position she held as the top lawyer for the city of North Las Vegas. She most recently worked for the law firm Covington & Burling, where she helped oversee litigation related to gambling.

Morgan received her undergrad degree at the University of Nevada (Reno) and her JD at the University of Nevada Las Vegas’ William S. Boyd School of Law.

“The Las Vegas connection was not a criteria, but it was something that was on the positive side of the ledger,” Raiders owner Mark Davis said. “Obviously, somebody that knows this community knows the people in it, I think is very important for us to continue to build our foundation in Las Vegas.”

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