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Speaking with Jed York

Santa Clara University kicked off its President’s Speakers series on Jan. 15 with a conversation with 49ers CEO Jed York. Leading the conversation with York in SCU’s Meyer Theater was Markkula Center for Ethics Acting Director Kirk Hansen.

Hansen chatted with York about a variety of topics spanning what it was like to be born into a family that owns a professional sports team, to York’s aspirations for the new Levi’s Stadium to be the greenest stadium in the NFL. “In Silicon Valley bigger isn’t better,” said York. “In Silicon Valley, smarter is better.”

Although York skirted some controversial questions – should college athletes get paid, and whether or not SCU should resurrect its football team – York did speak about something that’s been in the news lately – concussions in pro football.

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“The 49ers have always been on the forefront of health and safety,” he said. “My Dad [Dr. Edward York] is the chair of the NFL health and safety commission. We’re seeing more and more players coming out of the game [with possible injuries]. We’re taking that decision out of the player’s hands and putting it in the hand of a doctor. The NFL has done a great job of [responding] and adapting the rules.”

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