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The Woman Who Shaped the NFL's Domestic Violence Defense

Cynthia Hogan has been hired by the National Football League to help the organization with their issues of players abusing women. She is photographed in Washington, D.C. on October 23, 2014.
Photographer: Marvin Joseph/The Washington Post via Getty Images

At the Super Bowl on Sunday the talk will be of the Patriots’ offense, the Seahawks’ defense and deflated footballs. It won’t be of domestic violence.

How the National Football League managed to defuse the crisis can be traced in part to a woman -- 57-year-old Cynthia Hogan, a little-known yet plugged-in Washington insider. A former aide to Joe Biden both in the Senate and White House, Hogan was hired by the NFL as its Washington lobbyist just days after the video surfaced of running back Ray Rice beating his girlfriend in an elevator.