Kevin Warren Emerges as Front-Runner for Chicago Bears CEO of Football Operations Position

Big Ten Conference commissioner Kevin Warren has emerged as a front runner to succeed Ted Phillips as the Chicago Bears President/CEO, per ESPN’s Pete Thamel. Phillips, who has held that position since 1999, made plans public on September 2 that he would retire at the conclusion of the season. It’s also been reported that Warren has interviewed in person with the McCaskey family, which is a very good measure into how serious the interest is.

Warren has held a wide variety of executive positions dating back to 1997. From 1997-99, Warren was the Vice president of player programs for the St. Louis Rams. He was promoted to Vice president of football administration in 2000, and in the same year, won the Super Bowl. From 2001-03, Warren was the Senior vice president of business operations for the Detroit Lions. He then held various front office positions for the Vikings ranging from 2005-19, before taking the job as Big Ten commissioner in 2020.

Perhaps Warren’s most notable contribution as a front office executive was during his stint with the Vikings, as he directly oversaw the construction of U.S. Bank Stadium. This is of course notable as the Bears are in the midst of a stadium project of their own, with the Arlington Heights property reaching the early design rendering stage. If selected, Warren would no doubt be a helpful presence within the organization to ensure the team gets what they would want out of a new stadium.

The process of selecting a new President/CEO is not over, and other candidates are going to interview over the coming weeks with a decision looming in the near future. However the fact that Warren specifically has been reported shows how serious the interest is from both sides. Keep Warren’s name in mind over the coming weeks, and expect an official decision within a few weeks.

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