The Bears on Wednesday announced Darby Dunnagan as the club's Director of Video Operations, replacing Dave Hendrickson, who will retire from the position in June after 28 seasons with the club.
Dunnagan is the first female Director of Video Operations for the Bears in their 103-year history and is now the highest-ranking woman in football video across the NFL.
"We are excited to welcome Darby in to lead our video operations," general manager Ryan Poles said in a press release Wednesday. "Her leadership, experience and track record make her a great addition to our organization, and we can't wait to see how she helps our players, coaches and staff. This role is critical to our preparation and Darby has the traits to help us at a high level. We also want to thank Dave for his contributions to the club and wish him well in retirement."
Dunnagan comes to the Bears from Northwestern University where she most recently served as the football program's Director of Player Development. She joined the Wildcats in 2013, first serving as the program's Director of Video Operations. She was named the Big Ten Video Coordinator of the Year for 2020-21.
At Northwestern, Dunnagan supervised Northwestern football's video staff, coordinated practice filming, provided the coaching staff with opponent footage and contributed to the shooting and editing of post-production features.
Dunnagan has been involved in the sports video space on a national scale, being elected President of the Collegiate Sports Video Association in 2018. After serving a two-year term, she worked in a post-president advisory role until 2021. Prior to serving as President, Dunnagan was the Association's Vice President since 2014.
Before working at Northwestern, Dunnagan spent six years at the University of Memphis as the football program's video coordinator, where her duties were similar to those with the Wildcats. In 2013, she was selected as the Bob Matey National Video Coordinator of the Year and in 2010-11 and 2012-13 was named Conference USA Video Coordinator of the Year.
Dunnagan, who is from Rural Retreat, Va., graduated from the University of Virginia in 2005 with a bachelor's degree in anthropology and sociology. During her undergrad, she worked as a student manager for two years with the Cavaliers football team then made the switch to video. She went on to earn a master's degree in sports administration from Marshall University, where she worked as a graduate assistant in the video department.