In 2019, Kevin Warren was selected as the sixth conference commissioner in history joining an esteemed lineage of Big Ten Commissioners; he officially began his tenure in January 2020. During his first year of service, Warren launched a series of groundbreaking initiatives to address issues associated with mental health and wellness, social justice, voter registration and the international COVID-19 pandemic. Following the death of Minneapolis resident George Floyd, Warren announced the formation of the Big Ten Equality Coalition with a stated goal of seeking tangible ways to actively and constructively combat racism and hate around the world.
Warren previously served as the chief operating officer for the Minnesota Vikings. He was the highest-ranking African American executive working on the business side for a team in the NFL and the first African American COO in NFL history. Warren played a critical role in all business, financial, legal and operational aspects related to U.S. Bank Stadium and a key role in the design, development and planning of Twin Cities Orthopedics Performance Center, the Vikings headquarters in Eagan, Minn.
Prior to joining the Vikings, Warren worked for the international law firm of Greenberg Traurig, playing a critical leadership role with the Wilf Ownership Group during the acquisition of the Minnesota Vikings. He spent two seasons (2001-03) with the Detroit Lions as senior vice president of business operations and general counsel, and four seasons (1997-2000) with the St. Louis Rams as vice president of football administration and vice president of player programs and legal counsel. Prior to joining the Rams, he worked at a law firm specializing in representation of universities charged with NCAA violations. He also worked as a sports and entertainment attorney/agent representing various professional athletes, entertainers and broadcasters as the founder of Kevin Warren and Associates.
Warren earned his bachelor’s in business administration from Grand Canyon University in 1986, where he excelled in the classroom and on the basketball court earning several honors. He earned an MBA from Arizona State University, and his juris doctorate degree from the University of Notre Dame School of Law. He is a licensed attorney with the State Bar of Kansas, Michigan and the District of Columbia. Philanthropy is an integral part of his and his wife, Greta’s, life. They were active members of the Minneapolis-St. Paul community during his tenure with the Vikings.