Special to NYSportsJournalism.com
December 17, 2013: Russell Wilson is spending most of his time these days trying to quarterback the NFL's Seattle Seahawks into the playoffs and Super Bowl XLVIII.
But that doesn't mean he can't take on another role.
Alaska Airlines, an official marketing partner of the Seahawks, said it has signed Wilson as its "Chief Football Officer," and that he would appear in marketing "to engage with our customers and support youths in the community."
As part of their exclusive multi-year partnership, Wilson, in his second year with the Seahawks and regarded as one of the top young passers in the league, will appear at events and in marketing activities for Alaska Airlines.
He also will represent the carrier at the Russell Wilson Passing Academy, which provides inner-city and underprivileged youths an opportunity to attend football camp for a once-in-a-lifetime experience; and Seattle Children's Hospital, "where Wilson regularly visits young fans receiving care."
Alaska Airlines said it would donate 100,000 miles to Children's Hospital for each touchdown pass Wilson throws or touchdown he scores through the rest of this season.
Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.
Wilson also has endorsement deals with McDonald's and EA Sports.
Wilson has previously done local activations for Alaska Airlines, including greeting passengers at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport at the carrier's lobby check-in and gate areas; and speaking at a "Pledge It. Prove It. Take Flight" event that attracted more than 600 students from 21 high schools in Western Washington, "who heard from Wilson and employees of Alaska Airlines and its regional carrier, Horizon Air, about careers in aviation."
"His meticulous planning and legendary hustle help make Russell a proven winner. We're pleased to make him our honorary CFO: 'Chief Football Officer.'"
Among others, Alaska Airlines also has an alliance with the MLS Portland Timbers as jersey-front sponsor.
"All of us at Alaska are thrilled to announce this partnership," Brad Tilden, CEO for Alaska Airlines, said in a statement. "Russell is known for his determination, professionalism, integrity and his humble heart — qualities we all aspire to. His meticulous planning and legendary hustle help make Russell a proven winner. We're pleased to make him our honorary CFO: 'Chief Football Officer.'"
According to Russell, "Since coming to Seattle, I've enjoyed getting involved in the community. As I have, I've come to recognize Alaska Airlines as a leader in Seattle and an airline that I feel I have much in common with. I'm delighted to be partnering with Seattle's hometown airline."
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