Board of Directors

DeMaurice Smith, Chairman
Nolan Harrison, Acting Chairman
Maxine Baker, Director
Nikki Berti, Director
Andre Collins, Director
Ned Ehrlich, Director
Ken Jolly, Director
David Joyner, Director
Pete Kendall, Director
Dewey McClain, Director
Emery Moorehead, Director
Charles Swisher, Director

Slide 1

Eugene Thurman Upshaw, Jr. was born August 15, 1945, in Robstown, Texas and graduated from Texas A&I University.

Slide 2

Gene Upshaw was the Oakland Raiders’ first-round choice in the first combined AFL-NFL draft in 1967.

Slide 4

Gene Upshaw served as President of the NFLPA from 1980 until he was elected the Executive Director in 1983. He served in that capacity for 25 years.

Slide 3

Gene Upshaw played in 307 preseason, regular season, and post-season contests. Included in his 24 post-season games were three AFL and seven AFC championship games and Super Bowls II, XI and XV.

Slide 5

Gene Upshaw established the Professional Athletes Foundation in 1990 to provide assistance for players facing financial crisis.

Slide 7

Gene Upshaw passed away on August 20, 2008, at the age of 63. His legacy of helping players is felt through the continued work of the NFLPA and the Professional Athletes Foundation.

Slide 6

Gene Upshaw was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame as part of the Class of 1987.

Andre Collins

Andre, a former player himself, currently serves as the Executive Director of the Professional Athletes Foundation helping players transition out of the game. He is responsible for creating a sense of community and opportunity for former players. Andre’s driving force to make the transition smoother for former players is made stronger by his personal experiences after leaving the game. His wife Ericka and children Lola, Karis and Chet provide a balance that allows Andre to be creative and focused on former player concerns

Tyrone Allen

Tyrone serves as the Director of the Professional Athletes Foundation where he oversees the operations of the Players Assistance Trust, valued partner relationships and all emerging opportunities for the foundation. Originally from Philadelphia, Tyrone has extensive social-work experience, including over seven years working with former players. He currently resides in Washington, DC.

Leslie Isler

Leslie Isler serves as the Professional Athletes Foundation Associate coordinating programs and developing wellness engagements for former NFL players and their families. A Washington, D.C. native,Leslie recently obtained her MPS in Public Relations and Corporate Communications from Georgetown University to accompany her BS in Marketing from Towson University and a Sports Philanthropy graduate certificate from George Washington University.

Caryl Banks

Caryl serves as the Manager of the Professional Athletes Foundation helping players through the Players Assistance Trust (PAT) application process while also providing support and resources the player may need beyond the PAT. Originally from West Virginia, Caryl is a clinically licensed social worker with over 17 years’ experience in the field. She currently resides in Bowie, MD and is a proud mom to PFC Banks, Dominick U.S. Marine.

Laura Stefanow

Laura serves as the Assistant for the Professional Athletes Foundation helping players through the GU PAT application process while also connecting them with the appropriate resources throughout the NFLPA. A graduate of West Virginia University, Laura brings experience in community relations, health and wellness and customer service.

Services We Offer

  • Financial Assistance
  • Education Assistance
  • Health Care Resourcing
  • Mental Health Support
  • Addiction Counseling
  • Partner, Spouse & Family Counseling
  • Informational Symposiums
  • Budget Building Assistance