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NFLPA elects Lloyd Howell as new executive director

The NFL Players Association on Wednesday announced Lloyd Howell has been elected as its new executive director.

"The opportunity to represent the players is a privilege," Howell said in a statement. "I look forward to building relationships and the solidarity amongst our players. The history and strength of this institution is impressive, and I look forward to driving our bold goals and achieving them together in the future."

Howell is set to succeed the NFLPA's current executive director, DeMaurice Smith, who has held the title since 2009. Smith had informed the players ahead of his latest re-election in 2021 that it would be his final term.

"Serving the players has been the experience of a lifetime," Smith tweeted Wednesday. "I want to congratulate Lloyd Howell and wish him well on this incredible journey. I applaud the players for their tremendous work on this process, and I know all of them will lead the union well into the future."

NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell added in a statement, "I want to congratulate Lloyd Howell on his election as Executive Director of the NFL Players Association and to thank DeMaurice Smith for his continued partnership and unstinting work on behalf of NFL players. We look forward to working with Lloyd and his team to continue growing the game and making it better, safer, and more accessible and attractive to fans around the world."

Howell will become the NFLPA's fourth executive director in the labor union's history, succeeding Smith (2009-current), Gene Upshaw (1983-2008) and Ed Garvey (1971-1983).

"We are excited to have Lloyd lead our union into its next chapter and succeed DeMaurice Smith, who has ably led our organization for the past decade plus and has our gratitude and thanks," NFLPA president JC Tretter said in a statement. "It was important for us to run a process that lived up to the prestige of the position we sought to fill. The process was 100% player led and focused on leadership competency, skills and experience. Our union deserves strong leadership and a smooth transition, and we are confident Lloyd will make impactful advances on behalf of our membership."

Howell, who earned an M.B.A. from Harvard Business School after graduating from the University of Pennsylvania, has held a variety of leadership roles, most recently as chief financial officer and treasurer at Booz Allen Hamilton, Inc.

Howell's official start date as executive director will be announced in the coming weeks, per the NFLPA.

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