WASHINGTON (BP)--President Obama announced April 6 the rest of the members of his faith-based advisory council, but former Indianapolis Colts head coach Tony Dungy was not among them.
Dungy had been invited to be one of 25 people to serve on the President's Advisory Council on Faith-based and Neighborhood Partnerships, it was reported March 31 by religion writer Dan Gilgoff of U.S. News & World Report. A White House source said Dungy declined the invitation because he would be able to attend only two of four scheduled meetings, Gilgoff reported April 6. Instead, Dungy agreed to advise Obama on fatherhood initiatives.
Dungy said in a statement released to David Brody of CBN News, "I am honored to have been asked by the President to serve on the Council for Faith Based and Neighborhood Partnerships. In looking at the dates of the Council meetings I would not be able to participate to the degree I would want. Because of the time commitment needed I have respectfully declined, but do look forward to working with the President in furthering responsible fatherhood and other issues we both hold dear."
The White House invitation to Dungy drew criticism from organizations such as People for the American Way and Americans United for Separation of Church and State. They opposed Dungy's potential inclusion because of his support for an Indiana constitutional amendment to bar same-sex "marriage."
Dungy, a conservative evangelical Christian, became the first black head coach to lead a team to the Super Bowl championship when the Colts won the title in 2007. He retired after the 2008 season. He has been active in Southern Baptist churches in Tampa, Fla., where he served as head coach of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers for six seasons before taking over the Colts.
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