Great News for Jacksonville: We are Diverse! Jacksonville Jaguars is the first NFL Team Owned By A Minority

Shahid Khan will be the first minority to be a controlling owner of an NFL team. This is great news for Jacksonville, FL The city has struggled with racial and religious tension for years. Jacksonville demographics are changing rapidly as well as their economic engines which became increasingly global because of its powerful logistics hubs.

"Khan's presence, publicity and support of Jacksonville is an opportunity that is a major gift to our community" says internationally recognized expert on(and Jacksonville based) leadership in a diverse world, Pegine Echevarria, MSW, CSP she goes on to say "Jacksonville is primed and ready to be one of the nations leading logistics hubs. The waterways, interstates and railways allow easy access to the rest of the country. Global corporations and international investors are interested in Jacksonville, however concerns regarding Jacksonville's acceptance of diverse people hinders some of that growth. According to one of my clients (who I can't name) they chose NOT to locate their corporate headquarters here because of their perception of Jacksonville's race and religious issues."

Jacksonville is home to CSX - a leader among corporations in diversity and inclusion. CSX was named one of 2011 Diversity Inc.s Top 50, a huge honor. Jacksonville is now ready to be seen throughout the world as a powerful diverse community. The community also elected Mayor Alvin Brown their first black Mayor in June 2011.

Ms. Echevarria continued "Jobs are a on everyone's mind. It is up to Jacksonville residents to be pro-active and welcome Khan and his team, while communicating to the world that Jacksonville is a global community, inviting and accepting those who want to succeed, live and grow prosperously, harmoniously while enjoying the abundance that Jacksonville offers."

Pegine Echevarria, MSW, CSP was named by Society of Human Resource Management as one of 100 Global Thought Leaders on Diversity and Inclusion. Her company Team Pegine Inc. is located at the Beaver Street Enterprise Center. She is accepting invitations from Jacksonville based groups to speak on how they can be active leaders in a diverse world.

Wayne Weaver said "Shahid Khan is a great American success story and he will be an outstanding owner for this franchise and for this community. I am excited for the team and for our great fans because Shahid will bring passion and commitment to the job. He is committed to restoring a winning tradition here in Jacksonville."

Khan came to the United States from his native Pakistan in 1967 and attended the Univeristy of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. In 1970, he began working for Flex-N-Gate Corporation. He graduated from the University of Illinois in 1971 with a Bachelor of Science in Industrial Engineering.

Khan began a new business designing and manufacturing innovative lightweight, continuous metal bumper systems, with no seams to corrode or rust. Nearly two-thirds of all North American pick-up trucks and sport utilities have bumper systems based on Khan's designs.

In 1980, Khan purchased Flex-N-Gate. It now employs more than 10,000 associates at 48 manufacturing plants with annual sales exceeding $3 billion.

Khan has been a major donor to the University of Illinois. In September, he and his wife, Ann Carlson Khan, made a $10 million donation to the Urbana-Champaign campus.
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