Walton-Penner ownership group greets Broncos Country
For the first time since receiving unanimous approval, the other members of the Walton-Penner ownership group greeted Broncos Country.
"It is such an honor and a privilege to be an owner of this remarkable organization," said Mellody Hobson, a renowned businesswoman. "The moment is humbling and it's historical and yet I feel at home.
Both Hobson and Dr. Condoleezza Rice make history as the first Black women to be part of an original ownership group in the NFL. Both say the group of new owners want to make an impact beyond the field.
"This is a great tradition, a great heritage of winning but the goal now is to build on that heritage and tradition," said Dr. Rice, who spent much of her early life in and around Denver.
Dr. Rice, the former Secretary of State, Provost at Stanford, and National Security Advisor, said her father was a football coach and said, "Today he's thinking she finally got a really important job."
Dr. Rice said she remembers growing up in Denver around successful teams in the late 70s and early 80s.
"During that period of time everybody who lived here had to know what the Broncos mean to this community," she said. "You'd go into any grocery store, or any restaurant and there are all of those orange crush cans piled up with Rubin Carter or Louie Wright peering over them. And of course, the tradition would continue with the great Stanford man John Elway and Peyton Manning and others."
Now the new owners are hoping to bring back a championship-caliber team.
"In days when communities are ripped apart by so much a football team like the Broncos can be a source of unity, a source of common purpose, a source of common pride," Dr. Rice said.