American Football League (AFL)
Milt Woodard
File:Milton Woodard, July 25,1966.jpg
Personal Information:
June 4, 1911 in Tacoma, Washington, U.S.
March 3, 1996(1996-03-03) (aged 84) in San Jose, California, U.S.
Career Information
Journalist, Assistant Commissioner, American Football League (AFL), 1960-66
American Football League (AFL) President, 1966-70, sportswriter and columnist
Stadium High School (WA)
College of Puget Sound (WA), B.A. 1933, (Journalism)
University of Minnesota (MN)
Family Information
Corrine, ?-?
Nancy, ?-?
Frances, ?-?
Ross and Linda

Milton P. "Milt" Woodard (born on June 4, 1911 – died March 3, 1996) was an American sports writer and sport executive. He was the President of the American Football League until it merged with the NFL in 1970. He served from July 1966 to March 1970, succeeding Al Davis as the Commissioner of the League in addition to his title as President.


Woodard was born in Tacoma, Washington, where he attended Stadium High School and ran track and played football. His father was railroad worker. He attended the College of Puget Sound (now the University of Puget Sound) in Washington, where he played baseball. He graduated in 1933. He subsequently went to the University of Minnesota. Woodard had a distinguished career as a sportswriter for the Tacoma News Tribune and at the Chicago Sun-Times, where he served as the beat writer for the Chicago White Sox. He also covered boxing at Chicago Stadium. In 1951 he published a book under the American-based sports magazine The Sporting News (now Sporting News, or TSN) entitled "So You Want to Run a Ball Club?".[1] He wrote the track and field section of the 1945 Encyclopedia Britannica. He was the president of the Western Golf Association.

AFL careerEdit

Milt served under Joe Foss as the Assistant Commissioner from its inception in 1960 until 1966. Following the assassination of John F. Kennedy on November 22, 1963, Milt made the decision to postpone the week's American Football League games, while the National Football League continued with theirs. The AFL was praised for its choice by several prominent sportswriters of the time, such as Red Smith.[2] He served as President of the American Football League from July 1966[3] until the NFL officially merged with it in March 1970.[4] At the urging of AFL fans and players, Woodard had a commemorative Ten-year AFL shoulder patch produced for the 1969 AFL Champion Kansas City Chiefs to wear when they played and defeated the NFL Champion Vikings in the fourth and final AFL-NFL World Championship Game after the 1969 pro football season. In 1989, Woodard was inducted into the Washington Sports Hall of Fame.[5]

Personal lifeEdit

After his career in the AFL, he retired in La Jolla, California, where he played golf at the Jolla Country Club. He was married to three women over the course of his life. His first wife was Corrine Woodard. With his second wife, Nancy, he fathered two children, Ross and Linda. He then married his 3rd wife, Frances. He died in San Jose, California.[6]

See alsoEdit

Other American Football League executives, contributors, and players


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