Jacksonville native leads Jaguars’ social responsibility efforts to support community

Having an NFL team in Jacksonville enhances the community. A local woman is using her platform, position, mission, and resources to orchestrate change in this city.

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – The NFL draft starts Thursday, and one thing we know for sure is the Jaguars are about more than just playing football.

Having an NFL team in Jacksonville enhances the community.

Hometown woman T-Neisha Tate has a pretty sweet job. She was promoted by the Jaguars from director of programs to vice president of social responsibility and impact in the summer of 2020.

She took the reins in the throes of uncertainty and fear surrounding a pandemic and a racial reckoning -- with a diverse group of people demanding equality, fairness and opportunity for ALL people.

She now has the platform, a mission, and the resources to orchestrate change in a city she loves and grew up in.

“I went through an exercise of figuring out how best to communicate with the community. And sometimes that means how people want to receive their information, resident by resident sometimes,” Tate said. “So some of them, I can text them. Some of them, I just need to run into them in Ms. Cookie’s restaurant, Avenue Grill, and we can sit down and have a conversation. And we find ways to really touch on things -- big and small -- that help to make the community better from a really organic place.”

Tate said the Jaguars’ players are highly engaged in the efforts to give back.

“There’s nothing that we do in the community and Inspire Change that isn’t player led and player driven,” Tate said. “So when a cause comes up, they are fully involved in everything from helping to fund it, to deciding on what implementation looks like. So it becomes this really holistic approach of our team supporting our community.”

Tate said it’s a dream job to serve the community that gave her the heart and knowledge to know the right way to give back.

“It’s not just me thinking I know what’s best,” Tate said. “What I may come to the table with is just access to help. But what’s best is whatever the community or what that person or what your neighbor is saying they need and then you fill in from there.”

About the Author:

Anchor on The Morning Show team and reporter specializing on health issues.