NFL names Alberto Riveron as Senior Director of Officiating

Bob Levey

Alberto Riveron, the first Hispanic referee in NFL history, will take over as the league's new Senior Director of Officiating.

Alberto Riveron has been named the NFL Senior Director of Officiating, the league announced Tuesday. Riveron became the NFL's first Hispanic referee when he entered the league nine years ago. Beginning with the 2013 season, he will oversee the NFL Instant Replay Program and will assist Vice President of Officiating Dean Blandino in assigning and evaluating referee crews.

"Al did a tremendous job as a referee and was quickly able to earn the respect of the players and coaches," Blandino said. "His on-field experience will be an asset for us as we strive to improve the consistency and quality of our officiating program."

Riveron moved to Miami from Cuba when he was five years old. He developed a passion for football while he was in South Florida, and began officiating youth leagues in 1977. He worked his way through the college ranks until he debuted as an NFL side judge in 2004.

In 2008, Riveron was promoted to referee. He served as the ref for the classic 2012 AFC Championship Game between the Baltimore Ravens and the New England Patriots. Riveron's final assignment was this past season's AFC Wild Card game between the Houston Texans and the Cincinnati Bengals.

Riveron's new job at NFL headquarters in New York is effective immediately.

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