Adolpho A. Birch III
Board Officer: Secretary
Sr. VP Business Affairs and CLO, Tennessee Titans
Adolpho Birch was elected to the Vanderbilt Board of Trust in 2014. He received his undergraduate degree in 1988 from Harvard University following which he earned a J.D. from Vanderbilt Law School in 1991.
Mr. Birch is in his first season with the Titans as Senior Vice President, Business Affairs & Chief Legal Officer. He joined the organization in 2020 after spending 23 years at the NFL headquarters in New York. Birch’s responsibilities with the Titans include legal affairs, human resources, government relations, and business planning and strategy.
As an advisor to Commissioners Paul Tagliabue and Roger Goodell, Birch served in many senior-level roles during his time at the league office.
From 2015 to 2020, Birch served as the NFL’s Senior Vice President of Labor Policy & League Affairs. His broad range of duties covered labor negotiations, litigation matters, government relations, player engagement, employee development and the league’s critical response team. He helped develop, administer and enforce policies respecting the integrity of the game and the reputation of the league, including those on substances of abuse, performance-enhancing drugs, gambling and criminal misconduct.
Working with government officials, he also advanced the NFL’s legislative, political and regulatory interests on key issues such as youth concussion laws, the league's tax status and the FCC's blackout rule.
In supervising the NFL’s player engagement efforts, which encompass a number of programs to support player and employee off-field success, he helped improve access to continuing education, financial education, career development and clinical assistance.
Additionally, he served on several executive working groups and cross-organizational committees including those related to sponsorship, legalized sports betting, media advertising policy, and disaster relief.
Prior to his work in the league office, Mr. Birch was in private practice in Houston, Texas, initially with Fulbright & Jaworski’s Antitrust/Complex Litigation and Public Law group; and later with a boutique firm specializing in labor, insurance defense and municipal finance. Preceding his firm affiliations, he served as judicial law clerk to the Honorable Thomas A. Wiseman, Jr., Chief Judge of the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Tennessee.
Mr. Birch attended Vanderbilt University Law School as a Patricia Roberts Harris Scholar, serving on the Editorial Board of the Vanderbilt Law Review and earning his juris doctorate in 1991. He did his undergraduate work at Harvard University, where he graduated with honors in Government and participated as a member of the junior varsity lacrosse and basketball teams, Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity Inc. and other student organizations.
Mr. Birch was raised in Nashville and is actively involved in a number of professional and philanthropic organizations including the Sports Lawyers Association (Board of Directors), Partnership for Clean Competition (Board of Governors), Why Not Sports? (Advisory Board), Business of Sports School, New York City (Industrial Advisory Board) and the National Bar Association. In October 2010, Mr. Birch was chosen as one of the top 100 leaders of the African- American community by The Root, a media collaboration between scholar Henry Louis Gates, Jr. and the Washington Post.
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