The Atlanta Falcons today announced the promotion of Rich McKay to president & CEO of the club. McKay was previously president of the Falcons.
"Since joining the Falcons in 2003, there is no doubt that Rich has been a valuable leader of our club," Falcons Owner & Chairman Arthur M. Blank said. "Beyond his day-to-day duties as president of the Falcons, Rich has led a good number of key initiatives for us. In addition, he is increasingly enlisted by the league as someone who can be counted on to lend his experience, expertise and dedication to solve problems or generate new ideas.
"This promotion is in recognition of Rich's many contributions to the Falcons and the NFL, as well as recognition of his professional accomplishments along the way."
McKay manages the Falcons' business operations and works with General Manager Thomas Dimitroff on contract negotiations and salary cap management. In addition, he leads the club's planning for a new stadium in Atlanta as the team nears the expiration of its lease term at the Georgia Dome.
As owner and chairman of the club, Blank will continue to be involved in business operations, help set the strategic direction of the organization, and serve in an overall support capacity. All reporting relationships will remain the same.
McKay joined the Falcons in 2003 from the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, where he was general manager for nearly nine seasons. He began his tenure with the Buccaneers in 1992 as vice president of football administration. Prior to joining the Buccaneers, McKay was an attorney with the Tampa law firm of Hill, Ward, and Henderson, where he was the Buccaneers' legal counsel for six years.
McKay is highly regarded in the NFL and among followers of professional football. Since 1994, he has co-chaired the NFL's Competition Committee and on March 1 this year, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell named McKay chairman of the committee, which is comprised of NFL head coaches and league executives who study the game and recommend rule changes and modifications that ensure player safety while promoting competitiveness in the league.
For the past six years, McKay has served on the NFL Management Council Working Group, which is comprised of league executives who advise on collective bargaining issues. During the 2011 offseason, he played a pivotal role in negotiating a new 10-year collective bargaining agreement.
"Of all of the club executives, Rich had the most sustained and substantial involvement," said Jeff Pash, the NFL's general counsel, in a recent report published by the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. "We had a lot of club people who were involved in many phases of our planning, but Rich had the most direct ongoing involvement in the negotiations."
McKay earned his bachelor's degree from Princeton University and graduated from Stetson's College of Law in 1984. He is the son of the late legendary coach John McKay, who won four national championships at the University of Southern California and was the Buccaneers head coach from 1976-84. Rich and his wife, Terrin, have two sons, Hunter and John.