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    Senior director of football development
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Industry: Entertainment

Her mission, she says, is to “normalize women in football,” a lofty goal for one of the most male-dominated industries in the world. And yet Samantha Rapoport has achieved what few have even dreamed of: a winning streak of inclusion that has turned NFL owners, coaches, and executives into gender advocates. For the past three years, Rapoport has hosted a program that matches high-potential female candidates with team owners, general managers, and coaches. Now some 42 women, 59% of whom are women of color, are thriving in coaching, scouting, and football operations jobs at the professional or college levels. Twenty-five of the 32 NFL teams participate. “The societal implications are profound,” she says. “I’m so grateful for the chance to do this work. You can’t argue that women can’t be a part of football or anything else.”

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