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Sports & Fitness Industry Association Forms Football Council

Date: 2/13/13

Rawlings Executive Art Chou Elected Chairman 

SILVER SPRING, MD – February 13, 2013 – Leading football products companies have established the Sports & Fitness Industry Association’s (SFIA) Football Council in order to work together to support the game of football.  The overall goal will be to organize the football equipment industry, provide a venue for advancement of best practices and promote the safest game possible for all players.  
The inaugural meeting of the Council was held at the American Football Coaches Association (AFCA) convention in Nashville, TN.  More than 23 individuals representing 13 companies participated in the meeting which featured presentations from representatives of USA Football, National Federation of High Schools and National Operating Committee on Standards for Athletic Equipment (NOCSAE).  
“We are very excited to announce the formation of our football council.  This council is a forum where companies that are competitors on the field can join together to discuss and help promote the best interests of the game and its participants along with the positive attributes of the sport.  I look forward to working with our industry’s leaders to help benefit our great game of football,” said Art Chou, Rawlings Sr. Vice President of Product, who was elected as the Council’s first Chairman.
Industry executives agreed there is a need for companies with a stake in football to gather and address issues affecting the game. Initiatives under consideration by the Council include industry support for coaching education and certification programs, the creation of educational programs for athletes and athletes’ parents, advertising guidelines, and enhanced representation of the industry’s interests with standards organizations.
“The SFIA was born from the sport of football in 1905 when there were concerns about how the game was played.  Since then, we’ve been instrumental in creating and supporting standards, rules, and organizations that govern the sport.  With this commitment of the football industry, we will be able to make tangible progress to improve the quality and safety of the sport for generations to come,” said Tom Cove, SFIA President and CEO.

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