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  1. #1
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    Ownership Drama?

    It appears that Beth Bowlen Wallace has made a claim to be the Broncos' controlling owner. Apparently she made the claim to the Pat Bowlen Trust, and then went public with it. Joe Ellis then issued a statement that can only be described as the "smacking down" of that claim and letting everyone know that she hasn't met the qualifications laid out by Pat Bowlen. Hopefully this goes away and ownership drama doesn't become the norm in Denver. No need for any other distractions for the team.

    https://profootballtalk.nbcsports.co...rolling-owner/

    Posted by Charean Williams on May 31, 2018, 4:44 PM EDT

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    Beth Bowlen Wallace, the daughter of longtime Broncos owner Pat Bowlen, wants to take over as the team’s controlling owner. She has requested the team’s current leadership appoint her to that role.

    “I know the fans have been anxious and asking quite a few questions about what’s happening with the succession plan of the Denver Broncos,” Bowlen Wallace said, via Nicki Jhabvala of The Athletic. “I have completed the criteria laid out by the trustees, so I felt it was a good time to come out and express my interest and desire to be a part of the organization again.”

    In response, the Broncos released statements from the Pat Bowlen Trust and Broncos President and CEO Joe Ellis.

    The Pat Bowlen Trust’s statement reads:

    “The statements issued by Beth Bowlen Wallace today are contrary to Pat Bowlen’s long-standing succession plan that he created over many years of careful consideration.

    “Pat was determined to ensure the Broncos would remain a premier franchise in the National Football League in the event of his absence. He chose to sustain the team’s success in that eventuality by appointing three non-family trustees to determine whether any of his children had become qualified at some point to step into his shoes.

    “Pat did not designate Beth as a trustee or appoint her to a leadership position, nor did he instruct the trustees to specifically mentor her. He made it clear that his children were not automatically entitled to a role with the team and that they would have to earn that opportunity through their accomplishments, qualifications and character.

    “As trustees honoring the clear wishes of Pat, we have thoroughly evaluated whether Beth is capable of succeeding her father as controlling owner. We have determined that she is not capable or qualified at this time.

    “We have communicated our decision to Beth and her lawyers on multiple occasions. She is also fully informed as to why her employment with the team ended in 2015.

    “Although Beth has declined our invitations to discuss her qualifications for the last two years, we will continue to proactively engage and meet with any of the Bowlen children who express a desire to earn the right to succeed their father.

    “As trustees, we will continue to honor Pat’s long-standing plan to determine the Broncos’ future ownership and any potential appointment of his children to leadership positions within the organization. Our decisions will always be guided by what will ensure the long-term success and stability of the Broncos while also doing what’s best for our community, our fans and the NFL.

    “Consistent with Pat’s long-standing succession plan, our decisions are not to be dictated by the short-term or personal interests of any individual. We will vigorously defend Pat’s plan in responding to these and any statements that are contrary to Pat’s words and intentions.”

    The statement from Ellis reads:

    “As a trustee and someone Pat designated to oversee his team, I have an enormous responsibility to carefully administer his succession plan and make decisions in the best interests of the Broncos. We will continue to follow Pat’s blueprint — and nobody else’s — while keeping our focus as an organization on having a successful season.”

  2. #2
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    It wouldn't be a Broncos off-season without some kind of drama

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  4. #4
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    Here's an excerpt from an article that clears a little of this up and gives some background.

    In October 2013, Bowlen formally filed with the league to step down as controlling owner, placing the ownership of the team in the hands of three trustees: Ellis, team counsel Rich Sliva and Denver attorney Mary Kelly. It is Ellis who is Controlling Owner Delegee/CEO and has full authority to make final decisions for the team.



    Bowlen, who was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s nearly a decade ago, established a family trust years before to eventually transfer ownership of the team to his seven children. Each child would receive equal stake in the franchise, but only one would make the final decisions for the club, be the sole voice for the team at league meetings and have the title of controlling owner.

    It was Bowlen’s desire to keep the team within the family, but if the trustees ever deem it in the best interest of the team and the trust’s beneficiaries — Bowlen’s children — to sell, they have complete authority to do so.

    In short, while Pat Bowlen is still the owner of the Broncos, the trustees have the power. And Ellis, the team’s top decision-maker for now, also is the top decision-maker for his eventual replacement in the Broncos’ seat at NFL meetings.

    According to multiple NFL sources, the three trustees sent Bowlen’s children and wife Annabel a lengthy blueprint in February 2015 that included a list of requisites, in addition to a shortlist of responsibilities, for whomever will be the next controlling owner. The trustees informed Bowlen’s family that the bulleted items did not constitute a checklist and, if met, would not guarantee one would become controlling owner/CEO. The trustees would retain control, and any change in that structure would be at their discretion and require the approval of the league and 31 other NFL team owners.

    That list includes multiple subjective items, such as leadership and integrity and sound judgment. But it also includes more specific requirements, such as bachelor’s degree, paired with an MBA, J.D. or other advanced business-related degree. It also mandates at least five years of senior management experience with the league, team or Stadium Management Company, the group that operates the Broncos’ soon-to-be-renamed stadium. It does not, however, specify which job titles are considered senior management.

    Over the years, four of Bowlen’s children have worked with the team or the stadium. Only one — Patrick Dennis Bowlen III, 33, the eldest son and first child with Annabel — still has a job with either. He is a facilities coordinator for SMC.

    John Michael Bowlen, 32, was previously a marketing employee who worked out of the stadium but was placed on indefinite leave after he was arrested on domestic violence charges in June 2015 and later parted with the team.

    Then there’s Brittany Alexandra Bowlen, 28, one name that has come up often in the discussion of the next controlling owner. She worked in the NFL’s junior rotational program in New York, was an analyst in the Broncos’ business department in 2015 and completed an internship with the McKinsey & Company consulting firm last year. Brittany is expected to accept a full-time position with McKinsey after completing her MBA at Duke University this year.

    Beth Bowlen Wallace, 47, another discussed candidate and Pat’s youngest of two children with his first wife, Sally Parker, has a law degree from the University of Denver, which she completed in 2016, and previously worked with the team as a director of special projects for more than three years, the highest position by title held by a Bowlen child. During her time with the Broncos, Wallace helped to conceptualize the Ring of Fame Plaza outside the team’s stadium and has maintained a regular presence in the community with nonprofits and local organizations, including the Colorado Chapter of the Alzheimer’s Association.

    Pat’s other children include Amie Bowlen Klemmer, 48, his oldest child with Parker who resides in Hawaii; and his two youngest, Annabel Victoria Bowlen, 25, and Christianna Elizabeth Bowlen, 20, both of whom reside in Colorado.

    Since Pat Bowlen stepped down, Ellis has remained adamant that the team will eventually be passed down to Bowlen’s children.

    “You can look back in your archives and I can repeat what I said then,” Ellis said. “When a child is ready, one of the adult children will be in place.”

    At last year’s Super Bowl, NFL commissioner Roger Goodell said the Broncos are still owned by Bowlen and that the succession plan and its execution have remained compliant with league ownership rules. Six months later, when Goodell visited the team’s Dove Valley training facility, his stance was the same.

    “The Broncos are in compliance and they’re actually being very well run,” he said. “Our membership is very happy with that and it’s consistent with the way Pat wanted it done. Pat outlined that exactly the way it’s operating.”

    The exact timetable for a transfer of ownership has yet to be determined. Under the trust’s leadership, the Broncos have remained a profitable business and extended their regular-season home sellout streak to 373 games, despite their two trying seasons. Over the last half decade, since Bowlen officially stepped down, the Broncos have ranked among the NFL’s top five in wins and have played in two Super Bowls.

    But the league won’t wait forever, as evidenced by its mandates and sales of other teams. Although the Broncos’ operating structure has been approved multiple times by the league, they must maintain compliance with a viable transition plan.

    “The fundamental aspect of our policy is to make sure that we have an individual who has the ultimate authority over that franchise and can make those decisions, including league-level decisions as well as locally,” Goodell said.

    Last October, Pat’s brother, John Bowlen, announced his intention to sell his nonvoting minority interest (30 to 35 percent) in the franchise. The timing, in hindsight, wasn’t the greatest. John had at least one interested party at the time, but his ownership stake is still up for grabs. Plus, not only did the Broncos miss the playoffs this past season, the Carolina Panthers also created competition on the open market. Jerry Richardson, embroiled in allegations of workplace misconduct, said he will sell his team.

    NFL teams have been revered as coveted and exclusive commodities, primarily because there’s only 32 of them. Forbes recently estimated that at least eight teams could be up for sale in the next few years, and the Broncos are named as one.

    But the numbers and league rules make it easier to keep the team within the family. In May 2015, the league voted to allow trust ownership of teams and to reduce the minimum required percentage an owner must control to 5 percent, down from 10 percent. If Pat Bowlen’s majority stake is transferred to his children and split evenly among them, as he desires, each would easily meet the minimum. But only one, selected by the trustees, will receive the title of controlling owner and have final say over team decisions.

    For an outside individual or group, the purchase of at least 30 percent is required for an individual to be controlling owner, which, based on Forbes’ latest estimate of the Broncos’ worth ($2.6 billion), would cost approximately $780 million.

    So, for now, the Broncos remain a Bowlen team, placed in a trust he created and operated by Ellis. The trustees have penciled out a plan to help guide them to a Bowlen heir, but glaring “ifs” remain — if that criteria will be followed, let alone met, and if that criteria is enough.

    But perhaps no question looms larger than the simple one of whether a Bowlen child will indeed succeed his or her father and one day roam the field before another Super Bowl and give that thumbs-up of assurance that all is well.
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  5. #5
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    One thing is clear is that it was NOT Mr. Bowlen's intention to have the team perpetually operated by a Trust-- nor will the NFL allow this. The NFL gave permission for the team to operate under a trust as a temporary circumstance.

    I think after some time one could argue that Mr. Ellis and the other trustees are intentionally delaying naming a successor for their own personal gain.

    We are approaching a time-frame where it would not be unreasonable to request that Mr. Ellis should be requested to display what attempts he has made to qualify and identify a successor as intended. Mr. Bowlen did not give him the mandate to perpetually refuse candidates, but to identify and qualify successors.

    At some point the NFL could step in and say, 'your time is up' and you need to show us you have candidates in the queue and a time-frame expectation for a conclusion or we may force a sale of the team. Whomever is the successor will also need to be vetted by the NFL and go through their process to be qualified as an Owner-- we have not even gotten to that yet.
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  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rancid View Post
    One thing is clear is that it was NOT Mr. Bowlen's intention to have the team perpetually operated by a Trust-- nor will the NFL allow this. The NFL gave permission for the team to operate under a trust as a temporary circumstance.

    I think after some time one could argue that Mr. Ellis and the other trustees are intentionally delaying naming a successor for their own personal gain.

    We are approaching a time-frame where it would not be unreasonable to request that Mr. Ellis should be requested to display what attempts he has made to qualify and identify a successor as intended. Mr. Bowlen did not give him the mandate to perpetually refuse candidates, but to identify and qualify successors.

    At some point the NFL could step in and say, 'your time is up' and you need to show us you have candidates in the queue and a time-frame expectation for a conclusion or we may force a sale of the team. Whomever is the successor will also need to be vetted by the NFL and go through their process to be qualified as an Owner-- we have not even gotten to that yet.
    Essentially Joe Ellis is the owner, he was put in charge of the Trust and given the power to make full ownership decisions. Pat Bowlen also laid out steps and minimum requirements that any of his children must meet in order for them to qualify themselves to get controlling interest. If none of the children qualify then it's laid out how the sale of the team should go ahead, with Ellis deciding which bid to accept. The NFL also apparently signed off on the plans.

  7. #7
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    It also seems the Broncos terminated Ms. Bowlen from working there in 2015, that probably hurts her claims for ownership, and would pose a red flag when being vetted by the NFL.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Butler By'Note View Post
    Essentially Joe Ellis is the owner, he was put in charge of the Trust and given the power to make full ownership decisions. Pat Bowlen also laid out steps and minimum requirements that any of his children must meet in order for them to qualify themselves to get controlling interest. If none of the children qualify then it's laid out how the sale of the team should go ahead, with Ellis deciding which bid to accept. The NFL also apparently signed off on the plans.
    He is not 'essentially' anything other than a Trustee and the Club President and his role was created for the sole purpose of governing the Club until a successor is named-- he is a Temp with a specific task. He could be accused of sand-bagging for self-gain and find himself being accused of violating the intent of his role as Trustee. The current group of opposition does have some credibility as stakeholders and the NFL never intended for the Club to be governed by a temporary employee. The opposition is claiming that Mr. Ellis has not expressed what the criteria is that gets approval (in addition to Mr. Bowlen's) and because he has not expressed such criteria he can find himself being accused of being disingenuous as a Trustee-- some serious charges and the NFL might be aggressive in pushing this to a resolution backing the opposition as an heir as originally stated as a goal of Mr. Bowlen. He cannot camp out and be a poser!
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  9. #9
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    Another issue for Beth is that she is the daughter of Sally Parker. Annabel is very involved with the Broncos, being around the facility, even representing Pat in the trophy presentation. I'd guess she will do everything she can to assure her daughter Brittany [or a rehabilitaded John] becomes the owner over Beth.
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  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Butler By'Note View Post
    It also seems the Broncos terminated Ms. Bowlen from working there in 2015, that probably hurts her claims for ownership, and would pose a red flag when being vetted by the NFL.
    This is what threw up a huge red flag for me. Terminated means she didn't leave voluntarily. Ellis also said something about how "she knows why she was let go" in his statement. If your the daughter of Pat Bowlen I'm sure you get MUCH more leeway than an average employee before you are terminated.

  11. #11
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    Back in 2016, it was reported that Beth's role with the team as a director of special projects was "terminated" because she had been away from the organization while pursuing a law degree. There were no reports about any wrongdoing - unlike John, who was placed on indefinite leave after his arrest for domestic violence.

    https://247sports.com/nfl/denver-bro...ncos--74983437

    By WILL KEYS Jun 21, 2016

    Finally, 45-year-old Beth Bowlen has been away from her position with the team as a director of special projects and events for a year while she earned a law degree from the University of Denver. Although she graduated in May, there is still no word as to whether she plans to rejoin the Broncos organization in any capacity.
    Joe Ellis, via his statement and also via Mike Klis, his mouthpiece, did a very poor job with the character assassination on Beth Bowlen. I was expecting a more classy response from the Trust group.

    Pat Bowlen's brothers John and Bill are both supporting Beth's attempt to become the owner, so I doubt she did anything wrong while working for the Broncos.

    EDIT: Another article reporting that Beth left the team to work on her law degree:

    http://www.coloradodaily.com/sports/...n-team-remains

    By Nicki Jhabvala POSTED: 07/27/2016 07:56:44 PM MDT

    Over the past year, three Bowlen children who had been working with the team left for various reasons. Brittany Bowlen, 26, is working toward her master's in business administration at Duke University. Jane Elizabeth "Beth" Bowlen Wallace, 45, the youngest of Pat's two daughters with first wife Sally Parker, left the team as its director of special projects about a year ago to complete her law degree at the University of Denver. She graduated in May. And John Bowlen, 30, a former marketing employee out of Sports Authority Field, is pursuing other opportunities, according to the team.
    Last edited by -Rod-; 05-31-2018 at 10:45 PM.
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  12. #12
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    This article by Woody Paige [from 2017] looks quite relevant now, and has Brittany Bowlen as the favorite:

    http://coloradosprings.com/woody-pai...rticle/1612793

    Woody Paige: Ownership uncertainty swirls for Broncos after Pat Bowlen

    By Woody Paige Updated: October 10, 2017

    ...

    Ellis once said: "It's is Mr. Bowlen's hope that one child will come along, earn the right to sit in his chair and run the team."

    When I asked Bowlen years ago who would be his successor, his reply was: "I really don't know, but I would guess Brittany will at some point. She is the only one who has really expressed an interest in being the owner."

    Bowlen has two daughters by his first marriage to Sally Parker - Amie Bowlen Klemmer, who lives in Hawaii and is married to a doctor, and Beth Bowlen Wallace, who last year earned her law degree at the University of Denver.

    Klemmer never has shown any inclination to move to Denver and be involved with the Broncos. Wallace, married to a prominent Denver oil executive, served as director of special projects and events for the Broncos.

    But she left the organization. One source said she no longer wanted to work with the franchise and preferred other projects in her life.

    ...

    Brittany Bowlen was a national-class ice skater at Notre Dame and earned a degree, then entered the "junior management rotation" in the NFL home office. She returned a couple of years ago to work, and learn, with the Broncos, but resigned. She is at Duke in the prestigious MBA program. One Broncos source told me she intends to return to the Broncos.
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  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by -Rod- View Post
    Back in 2016, it was reported that Beth's role with the team as a director of special projects was "terminated" because she had been away from the organization while pursuing a law degree. There were no reports about any wrongdoing - unlike John, who was placed on indefinite leave after his arrest for domestic violence.

    https://247sports.com/nfl/denver-bro...ncos--74983437



    Joe Ellis, via his statement and also via Mike Klis, his mouthpiece, did a very poor job with the character assassination on Beth Bowlen. I was expecting a more classy response from the Trust group.

    Pat Bowlen's brothers John and Bill are both supporting Beth's attempt to become the owner, so I doubt she did anything wrong while working for the Broncos.

    EDIT: Another article reporting that Beth left the team to work on her law degree:

    http://www.coloradodaily.com/sports/...n-team-remains
    That article says she left. "And now, as was reported today, John, Brittany, and Beth Bowlen have each stepped away from the Denver Broncos for separate reasons"

    Joe Ellis said " She is also fully informed as to why her employment with the team ended in 2015".

    Why would she need to be fully informed if she stepped away on her own accord? Wouldn't she be doing the "informing" in that case?

    I'm going to go out on a limb and say Joe Ellis has a better idea of what is going on behind the scenes than whoever wrote that article.

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    Another red flag, Why is she declining to discuss qualifications with the trust for the last two years? If she is being open and is confident in her ability to lead the team why is she dodging the trust?

    Another red flag. Why is she bringing this out into the public eye if not to garner public support before an all out legal battle. That is definitely NOT something Pat would want. Again why is this even in the news and not being discussed behind closed doors?

    Also I don't necessarily buy family members statements, especially when so much money is involved. My Aunts and Uncles have been fighting over my Grandpas money for years and there has been some shady stuff going on, especially with some of the lesser successful (poor) siblings.

    I would like to put faith in Pat that he put a system in place to protect against Ellis and the other trustees abusing power, or un qualified children taking over. When so much money and power is involved you never know.

    I really wish this would have come out right after the season and not a few months before pre season starts.

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