Dover, Del. – DeMaurice F. Smith, Executive Director of the National Football League Players Association, will give the keynote address at the Thursday, May 12 Commencement Ceremony for masters and doctoral graduates at Delaware State University.
The ceremony is scheduled for 10 a.m. at Memorial Hall Gymnasium on the university’s Dover campus.
Smith was reappointed to his fifth term as Executive Director of the NFLPA in 2021. He was first elected to the post in March 2009.
In March 2020, he successfully negotiated his second long-term collective bargaining agreement with the National Football League. The eleven-year deal introduced an additional game to the regular season while providing players with their guaranteed highest share of NFL revenue in league history.
Smith also led negotiations to create comprehensive Covid-19 protections and protocols for his membership, obtained comprehensive testing and opt-out provisions for players, and designed the return to play agreements that secured NFL Players their full salary for the season despite a projected $3 billion revenue shortfall for the NFL in 2020. The NFL was able to play an entire season, playoffs, and Super Bowl LV in Tampa, Fla., during the height of the pandemic.
Mr. Smith is a sought-after motivational speaker for corporations, labor unions, and charities, in addition to a guest lecturer and distinguished speaker on college campuses around the country on topics of leadership, ethics, sports law, and high-stakes negotiation.
Smith, a native of Washington, D.C., resides in the metropolitan area with his family.