Funeral arrangements in place for Steelers' owner Dan Rooney
Funeral arrangements in place for Steelers' owner Dan Rooney
Steelers' owner Dan Rooney dies
15 April, 2017, 12:22
GOLDMAN: In 1933, Art Rooney's new NFL team in Pittsburgh signed one of only two black players in the league.
But, just as the Steelers were not born a powerhouse, Rooney himself didn't begin his career with the team at the top of the franchise. Rooney was the son of former Steelers owner Art Rooney, and he was elected to the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2000 for his contributions to the game.
Under head coach Chuck Noll, the Steelers built a dynasty, winning four Super Bowls in six years (1975, 1976, 1979 and 1980).
"Mr. Rooney touched everybody he ever met. Words can not express the impact he had on me, my family and our organization on a daily basis".
Rooney also served as the USA ambassador to Ireland from 2009-2012, becoming the first ambassador from the U.S.to visit each of Ireland's 32 counties.
We are deeply saddened by the loss of Dan Rooney. Up until 1979, there was only one minority head coach in the NFL. While the NFL nearly had 65 percent of its athletes being Black, only six percent of the league had minority representation as head coaches. Seventy years later, Dan Rooney was the driving force behind the Rooney Rule.
He helped develop the Rooney Rule under which National Football League teams are required to interview minority candidates for coaching and front-office positions. It has been incredibly beneficial for many minority candidates, including current Browns coach Hue Jackson as well as Steelers coach Mike Tomlin.
"The passing of Mr. Rooney is a hard time, not just for myself, the Pittsburgh Steelers organization and the National Football League". Rooney passed away on Thursday at 84-years-old.
President Barrack Obama: Rooney served as an ambassador to Ireland under President Obama.
"I knew he'd do a wonderful job", Obama said of Rooney in an official statement following his death. And Rooney, a white man from Pittsburgh, left his mark as a groundbreaker as well. The rule was named in honor of Rooney, who had served as chairman of the league's diversity committee.
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