Colts establish Tony Dungy Diversity Fellowship for diverse, talented coaches
INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — The Indianapolis Colts on Monday announced the creation of the Tony Dungy Diversity Fellowship program to give talented football coaching candidates a chance to gain experience as they advance in their careers.
The Colts say the fellowship will provide the team with access to diverse, talented coaches while strengthening and expanding its diversity, equity, and inclusion initiatives.
Qualified candidates will be assessed and interviewed by a selection committee comprised of Dungy, the Irsay family, General Manager Chris Ballard, Head Coach Frank Reich, and other members of the Colts coaching staff and football operations team.
As part of the program, the Colts will hire a Dungy Fellow for the offense and the defense.
Jim Irsay, Colts CEO and owner, says the organization is humbled and honored that Dungy’s accomplishments are Colts history, but adds that “none of us can afford to rest on our laurels when it comes to advancing fairness and opportunity in the NFL’s coaching ranks.”
“That’s why the Colts are so proud to create this fellowship in Tony’s honor that will help level the playing field for those who want to coach, teach, and lead,” Irsay said.
Dungy is the winningest head coach in Colts history and became the first Black head coach to win a Super Bowl after the team’s victory in Super Bowl XLI. He finished with 10 or more wins and made the playoffs in every season. Dungy was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2016 and is a member of the Colts Ring of Honor.
“I am thrilled that the Colts are seeking to help build diversity and inclusion in NFL coaching by launching this Diversity Fellowship coaching program,” Dungy said. “It’s a tremendous honor for me to be identified with the program. I applaud the Irsay family and the organization for taking this proactive step, and I hope it encourages other teams to look for ways to promote equal opportunities in the coaching ranks.”
Candidates who are interested in the program should visit the Colts website for more information and to apply.
The Colts will continue to fill positions through the NFL’s Bill Walsh Diversity Coaching Fellowship, which gives talented coaches the opportunity to use NFL clubs’ training camps, offseason workout programs, and minicamps to further their careers.