African-American woman from North Carolina hired as full-year coaching intern for Washington Redskins

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Tuesday, February 11, 2020
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Jennifer King was an intern under Rivera with the Panthers.

ASHBURN, VA (WTVD) -- Former Carolina Panthers head coach Ron Rivera announced he would bring Jennifer King onto his staff as a full-year intern with the Washington Redskins.

No African-American woman has ever been a coach or assistant coach in the NFL.

King is well on her way to break that glass ceiling. She grew up in Rockingham County, North Carolina, and went to Guilford College.

King coached wide receivers as an intern with the Panthers the previous two summers. She was an offensive assistant coach with Dartmouth and played with the New York Sharks in the Women's Football Alliance. There was also a pit stop in the now-defucnt AAF as an assistant with the Arizona Hotshots.

King will now be a full-year offensive assistant coach under Rivera, who she's worked for previously.

"The biggest thing I learned from Jennifer is there is a whole untapped source for coaching," Rivera told reporters at the 2019 Women's Careers in Football Forum. "She's a unique individual. She's coach women's college basketball and won a national championship. She's played football. She loves the's a person who really wants to put herself out there and create that opportunity."

King's move up is part of the handful of women breaking into NFL coaching circles in recent years. Earlier this month, Katie Sowers became the first woman coach to reach the Super Bowl in her role with the San Francisco 49ers. The Tampa Bay Buccaneers carry assistant defensive line coach Lori Locust and assistant strength and conditioning coach Maral Javadifar.

Also this month, the Cleveland Browns hired Callie Brownson as new head coach Kevin Stefanski's chief of staff.

In 2019, referee Sarah Thomas became the first woman to officiate an NFL playoff game in an AFC divisional round clash between the New England Patriots and Los Angeles Chargers.