April is Autism Awareness Month and although the Eagles’ next game isn’t until later this year, it’s going to be a festive, tailgate-like atmosphere in West Chester, Pennsylvania, this Sunday.
Patrick Dolan, the Eagles’ VP of Football Technology, and his Team Dolan are hosting a fundraiser at the Barnaby’s in West Chester on Sunday from 2-6 PM with proceeds going to the Eagles’ Autism Challenge . Eagles Legends Connor Barwin and Brent Celek, SWOOP, and the Eagles Cheerleaders will be on hand. Tickets are $50 and one-of-a-kind autographed items will be up for grabs in a raffle.
“Everyone wants to do their bit to try and raise money for the Eagles’ Autism Challenge,” said Dolan. “The aim is to raise money and have a good time.”
Dolan took over in 2013 for Mike Dougherty, a pioneer who set the standard for the entire league as the Eagles’ video director for nearly 40 years. A member of the NFL Video Directors Committee, Dolan and his team oversee all the video and data that the coaches and personnel and players use to either evaluate, teach, or learn, make adjustments , and – in Dolan’s words – “hopefully winning championships.” Dolan previously served as the assistant video director for the Pittsburgh Steelers from 1988-98 and then started the video operations for the expansion Cleveland Browns in 1998 and remained on their staff through 2009.
From the time Dolan arrived in Philadelphia, he immediately saw how winning off the field was vitally important to Chairman and CEO Jeffrey Lurie. Through the Eagles’ Autism Challenge, Dolan sees an opportunity to impact a cause that is personally important not only to Lurie, but to so many people in the Philadelphia region. His wife, Tammy, worked as a life skills trainer for Cheshire Intermediate Unit and since launching the Eagles’ Autism Challenge in 2017 she has learned about so many people dealing with the challenges of the disorder.
“It’s great to help something that means so much to him because he gives us all kinds of great resources to try to be successful,” Dolan said of Lurie. “Jeffrey sets the tempo with everything we do. When you have that personal connection, like he does, you feel it. It’s no different when you’ n see how much he cares about the team and the organisation. Having worked for three organisations, three very good football organisations, you talk to people, you talk to your peers around the NFL, and you get a sense of how good we really are from an ownership standpoint. I like to say I’ve been blessed because of my experiences.”
Even if you can’t make it to Barnaby’s in West Chester this Sunday, there’s still time to sign up for the Eagles Autism Challenge as the fifth annual walk, run, walk event takes place on May 21! Save 50% on registration by using the code April22 at checkout.