Michael Bidwill

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search

Michael Bidwill (born December 1964) is a National Football League executive with the Arizona Cardinals. After practicing law for six years as a federal prosecutor, Michael Bidwill joined the Arizona Cardinals organization in 1996 as Vice President/General Counsel. Today he serves as team President. Since taking over as team President in 2007, the Cardinals have gone .500 or better in 5 of 7 seasons (and just twice in previous 20 years). [1]

Biography[edit]

Michael Bidwill grew up the second of five children in his family. He began to enjoy American football when he visited the Cardinals' training camp for the first time in 1969. In 1974, Bidwill's father made him one of the team's ball boys including his brothers William Jr., Patrick and Tim. Said Bidwill in 2007: "I understood at a young age that when you don't win, there will be criticism." Michael Bidwill earned a Bachelor of Science degree in finance from Saint Louis University in 1987 where he was a member of Phi Delta Theta. Later, he graduated from the Columbus School of Law at Catholic University in 1990. From 1990–96, Michael was a federal prosecutor in Phoenix.

NFL career[edit]

Michael Bidwill chairs the NFL’s Security and Fan Conduct Committee, a group of eight club executives that oversees and develops best security practices for NFL facilities. [2] He also serves on the board of the National Football League Foundation, which in 2013 awarded more than $23 million in grants to support youth and high school football programs, health and safety efforts, as well as community health initiatives.[3] Bidwill has also been a member of the league’s Business Ventures Committee since 2007 when Commissioner Roger Goodell appointed him to it. [4]

Cardinals turnaround[edit]

While the Cardinals struggled to fill Sun Devil Stadium, Bidwill publicly stated that fans would respond in greater numbers if given a better environment. He also emphasized that the team could not compete without the revenue streams a new stadium would bring. The Cardinals have sold out all 83 games played since the stadium opened in 2006. They sold out 12 total games in 18 seasons at Sun Devil Stadium. In eight seasons at University of Phoenix Stadium, the Cardinals have won their conference once, their division twice, and finished .500 or better in 5 of 8 seasons. They had two seasons of .500 or better in 18 seasons before moving into University of Phoenix Stadium. [5]

University of Phoenix Stadium[edit]

Wrote the Washington Post in 2009, "It's the new stadium, many people inside and outside the organization said, that began the Cardinals' transformation from laughingstock into Super Bowl participant. Once the stadium was built, the team could emerge from its days of having to play before small crowds on a torn-up field as the secondary occupant of Arizona State University's Sun Devil Stadium." [4]

Denver Broncos owner Pat Bowlen told Forbes in 2007, "Their biggest problem was that they needed a new stadium...The stadium is the underpinning of a significantly new situation for the Cardinals." Added Eagles owner Jeffrey Lurie, "The league needs a successful franchise in that booming area of the country. They maybe have an opportunity to thrive." [5]

Cardinals defensive end Bertrand Berry to the Boston Globe in 2009: "The biggest thing was to get the stadium; not being out there in Sun Devil Stadium in blistering temperatures with people not really wanting to go out there. I mean we didn't want to play out there it was so hot. With the new stadium it's brought excitement. With the new players that have been drafted and free agency, everything has just come together. It was a perfect storm for us." [6]

Other[edit]

In addition to his role with the Cardinals, Bidwill has been active in the greater Phoenix business community where he has been an advocate for economic growth and development.

From 2008-10, Bidwill served back-to-back terms as Chairman of Greater Phoenix Economic Council (GPEC). [6] He is also a board member of Greater Phoenix Leadership (GPL), an organization composed of the region’s top business and civic leaders. [7] In July of 2011, Bidwill and 16 business leaders in the state were appointed to the Arizona Commerce Authority Board of Directors. [8] Michael is also a member of the board for the Pat Tillman Foundation, which carries on the legacy of the former Cardinals safety killed in Afghanistan in 2004.

In 2010, Bidwill was selected by the Phoenix Business Journal as one of its 25 “Most Admired CEO’s.” [9] In 2009, he received the Leader for Tomorrow award from the Boy Scouts of America.

Bidwill serves on Arizona’s Super Bowl Host Committee. That group oversaw the successful staging of Super Bowl XLII at University of Phoenix Stadium in 2008. [10] It also brought the 2015 game (Super Bowl XLIX) and its half billion dollar economic impact to the state. Super Bowl XLIX will be played at University of Phoenix Stadium on February 1, 2015. [11]

A January 2014 poll in the Phoenix Business Journal asked “what business leader had the best 2013?” Michael Bidwill finished first with 34% of the vote. [12]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Arizona Cardinals. "Arizona Cardinals Media Guide". Arizona Cardinals Football Club. Retrieved 7 April 2012. 
  2. ^ "Arizona Cardinals: Michael Bidwill, President". Arizona Cardinals. Retrieved 7 April 2014. 
  3. ^ Staff (12 December 2012). "NFL Announces New Charitable Organization: The National Football League Foundation". NFLCommunications.com. 
  4. ^ Mike Sando (16 April 2010). "Kroenke, NFC West committee roles". ESPN. 
  5. ^ Bob McManaman (27 December 2013). "Bruce Arians makes Arizona Cardinals game plan early birds". Arizona Republic. 
  6. ^ Staff (7 October 2010). "Cardinals president Michael Bidwill honored tonight in Phoenix". NFLCommunications.com. 
  7. ^ Staff. "Member Directory". Greater Phoenix Leadership. Retrieved 7 April 2014. 
  8. ^ Staff. "ACA Board of Directors". Arizona Commerce Authority. Retrieved 7 April 2014. 
  9. ^ Staff (7 October 2010). "Cardinals president Michael Bidwill honored tonight in Phoenix". NFLCommunications.com. 
  10. ^ Staff. "Michael Bidwill". NFLFoundation.org. 
  11. ^ Eugene Scott (19 March 2014). "2015 Super Bowl could be Valley's biggest yet". Arizona Republic. 
  12. ^ Business Pulse – Polls and Surveys. "What business leader had the best 2013?". Phoenix Business Journal. 

External links[edit]