Tom Benson purchased the Saints from John Mecom Jr. in 1985, this after hearing a group of investors were interested in buying the team and moving them to Jacksonville, Florida.
Being a Louisianian (born 1927 in New Orleans) he knew that such a move would not only mean devastation for the city, but for the entire state of Louisiana as well. Benson bought the Saints and ownership of the team was officially transferred to him on May 31, 1985.
Shortly after acquiring the Saints, he gained a reputation as one of the more popular and colorful owners in the league as he was always seen on the Saints sidelines doing the Benson Boogie.
Knowing the history of the Saints, Benson knew he had to make changes, and he wasn’t afraid to do just that.
He hired general manager Jim Finks and head coach Jim Mora the following year, who went on to lead the Saints to their first winning season and playoff appearance in the history of the franchise.
The Saints had several seasons where they just couldn’t seem to put it all together, then came Hurricane Katrina, forcing the team to relocate, and play their home games all over, but statements and rumors about how Benson wanted to move the team out of New Orleans caused a serious decline in popularity for the Saints owner.