I was surprised the images of National Football League Commissioner Roger Goodell accepting the Brain Injury Alliance of Washington's (BIAWA) 2014 Leadership Award on behalf of the NFL on November 1st weren't picked up anywhere else in the media. Goodell attended the 8th Annual B.I.G. Event (Brain Injury Gala) at the Seattle Westin Hotel in celebration of the passage of youth concussion legislation in all 50 states. Many of these laws were modeled after Washington state's first-in-the-nation "Zackery Lystedt Law". It took many partners to support this momentous health and safety accomplishment, from the Lystedt family who were were willing to share their story, to a small organization like BIAWA that brought together a state-wide coalition.
Four years ago, Commissioner Goodell attended BIAWA's 4th Annual Gala and made a commitment to offer the NFL's support and leadership to ensure passage of youth concussion laws throughout the country. Through the NFL's dedication and that of its 32 clubs to advocate before every state legislature, as well as the Goodell's willingness to contact the governor or every state that did not have a law, 44 states adopted laws to protect youth athletes.
"The passage of the Lystedt Law in all 50 states is an important step for all young athletes and their parents," Commissioner Goodell said. "The Lystedts, BIAWA and others should rightfully be proud of all that they did to make the nationwide passage a reality. We are honored to support their work to protect all young players, no matter what sport they play. We will continue to focus on making our game better and safer and setting the right example on health and safety in sports."