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David R. Duerson

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Information about David R. Duerson

Profile image of David R. Duerson

Profession

Category:
SportsMakers
BusinessMakers
Occupation(s):
Football Player
Corporate Chief Executive

Favorites

Favorite Color:
Black, Red
Favorite Food:
Catfish, Raw Oysters
Favorite Time of Year:
Fall
Favorite Vacation Spot:
South Florida, Hawaii
Favorite Quote:
Never Be Satisfied.

Birthplace

Born:
11/28/1960
Birth Location:
Muncie, Indiana

Profession

Category:
SportsMakers
BusinessMakers
Occupation(s):
Football Player
Corporate Chief Executive

Favorites

Favorite Color:
Black, Red
Favorite Food:
Catfish, Raw Oysters
Favorite Time of Year:
Fall
Favorite Vacation Spot:
South Florida, Hawaii
Favorite Quote:
Never Be Satisfied.

Birthplace

Born:
11/28/1960
Birth Location:
Muncie
See how David R. Duerson is related to other HistoryMakers

Biography

Former NFL player-turned-business owner David Duerson was born in Muncie, Indiana, on November 28, 1960. After graduating from Northside High School in Muncie, Duerson began his promising football career at the University of Notre Dame. Duerson spent the summers from 1979 to 1981 working as a law clerk in Miami, Florida, and during the summer of 1982, he served as legislative aide to U.S. Senator Richard Lugar. Duerson graduated from Notre Dame with a B.S. degree in economics in 1983.

Following graduation, Duerson joined the Chicago Bears, where he played from 1983 to 1989, earning his first Super Bowl ring in Super Bowl XX. In 1990, he joined the New York Giants, and that year the Giants won Super Bowl XXV. He then went on to play for the Phoenix Cardinals from 1991 to 1993. After leaving the NFL, Duerson decided to go into business through franchise ownership. He attended McDonald's Corporation's Hamburger University and in 1994 bought three McDonald's restaurants in the suburbs of Louisville, Kentucky. Selling his franchises in 1995, Duerson became president and CEO of Fair Oaks Farms, one of the primary suppliers of sausage to McDonald's and a number of other companies with an international distribution arm to Japan, Singapore, Turkey and Kuwait. Under his leadership, sales grew from $38 million in 1998 to $63.4 million in 2001. That same year, he earned an executive M.B.A. from Harvard University's Owners and Presidents Management Program.

In 2002, Duerson started Duerson Foods, providing pork and turkey sausage products to corporations such as Burger King, White Castle and SYSCO.

Duerson has earned a number of honors over the years, including being named two-time All-American at Notre Dame and the 1987 NFL Man of the Year. He serves on the University of Notre Dame Board of Trustees and as chairman of the National Football Foundation & College Hall of Fame, Chicago Chapter. He is also active with the Boys & Girls Clubs of America, serving as a national trustee. Duerson and his wife, Alicia, have four children.

Duerson passed away on February 17, 2011.

Duerson was interviewed by The HistoryMakers on August 28, 2003.

See how David R. Duerson is related to other HistoryMakers
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  • Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of David Duerson interview
  • Tape: 1 Story: 2 - David Duerson's favorites
  • Tape: 1 Story: 3 - David Duerson describes his mother's background
  • Tape: 1 Story: 4 - David Duerson discusses his father's family background
  • Tape: 1 Story: 5 - David Duerson relates his family's history after the U.S. Civil War
  • Tape: 1 Story: 6 - David Duerson describes his father's career successes
  • Tape: 1 Story: 7 - David Duerson remembers his hometown of Muncie, Indiana
  • Tape: 2 Story: 1 - David Duerson discusses his mother's life
  • Tape: 2 Story: 2 - David Duerson recalls the Duerson family's interstate travels
  • Tape: 2 Story: 3 - David Duerson discusses recreation in Muncie, Indiana
  • Tape: 2 Story: 4 - David Duerson describes his childhood shenanigans
  • Tape: 2 Story: 5 - David Duerson recalls his early sports achievements
  • Tape: 2 Story: 6 - David Duerson details his early educational experience
  • Tape: 2 Story: 7 - David Duerson remembers influential teachers
  • Tape: 3 Story: 1 - David Duerson remembers his high school years
  • Tape: 3 Story: 2 - David Duerson describes his national and international travel during high school
  • Tape: 3 Story: 3 - David Duerson details his high school athletic accomplishments
  • Tape: 3 Story: 4 - David Duerson remembers his college years at the University of Notre Dame
  • Tape: 3 Story: 5 - David Duerson discusses his continued involvement with the University of Notre Dame
  • Tape: 3 Story: 6 - David Duerson recalls Notre Dame teammates and their athletic exploits
  • Tape: 3 Story: 7 - David Duerson explains why he chose football over baseball
  • Tape: 4 Story: 1 - David Duerson discusses some unexpected setbacks in his professional football career
  • Tape: 4 Story: 2 - David Duerson remembers 'Papa Bear' George Halas and Bears teammates
  • Tape: 4 Story: 3 - David Duerson recalls his clashes with Bears defensive coordinator, Buddy Ryan
  • Tape: 4 Story: 4 - David Duerson details how he learned to handle Buddy Ryan's racism
  • Tape: 4 Story: 5 - David Duerson reveals the inner workings of the Chicago Bears coaching staff
  • Tape: 4 Story: 6 - David Duerson describes his teammate, Bears quarterback Jim McMahon
  • Tape: 4 Story: 7 - David Duerson describes Buddy Ryan's coaching skills
  • Tape: 5 Story: 1 - David Duerson remembers the end of his career with the Chicago Bears
  • Tape: 5 Story: 2 - David Duerson discusses his career after the Chicago Bears