All-Star Advisory Board

Pat Griffin

Griffin is Professor Emerita in the Social Justice Education Program at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst and project director for Changing the Game: The Gay Lesbian Straight Education Network (GLSEN) Sports Project (sports.glsen.org) whose mission is to assist K-12 schools in making athletics and physical education respectful, safe and inclusive for students of all sexual orientations and gender identities. She wrote a book entitled, Strong Women, Deep Closets: Lesbians and Homophobia in Sports, co-edited Teaching For Diversity and Social Justice, and co-authored On The Team: Equal Opportunities for Transgender Student-Athletes, 2010. In addition, she is the author of Pat Griffin’s LGBT Sports Blog (www.ittakesateam.blogspot.com). She was named among the 100 Champions of LGBT Sports by the Chicago Game Games in 2006. In 2007 Dr. Griffin was named one of the top 100 sport educators in the United States by the Institute for International Sport.  She was the 2012 recipient of the National Girls and Women in Sport Rachel Bryant Award and the 2011 recipient of the R. Tait McKenzie Award from the American Alliance of Health Physical Education Recreation and Dance. She was also voted Outsports.com Person of Year for 2011 for her accomplishments combating homophobia and sexism in sport.  Dr. Griffin played basketball, field hockey and swam at the University of Maryland. She coached high school basketball, field hockey and softball in Montgomery County, MD and coached swimming and diving at the University of Massachusetts Amherst. She won a bronze medal in the 1994 Gay Games Triathlon and a gold medal in the 1998 Gay Games Hammer Throw.

Cyd Zeigler

Zeigler was born in Harwich, Massachusetts, and lived there through high school. He was a track & field athlete and led his high school track team in scoring three consecutive years.[1] Zeigler graduated from Stanford University (B.A., Communication, 1995), where he founded Theta Delta Chi Fraternity, was on the Stanford Men’s Ultimate (Frisbee) Team, and was a contributor to the Stanford Review newspaper. He is a former sports editor for Genre Magazine, former associate editor for the New York Blade, and has written for the New York Press and Out Magazine. He has appeared on ESPN, Fox Sports Radio, as well as contributing to Sports Illustrated, Logo and the New York Times. In 1999, Zeigler and Jim Buzinski founded Outsports.com. They co-authored “The Outsports Revolution: Truth & Myth in the World of Gay Sports.” Zeigler is credited with breaking the story of John Amaechi coming out of the closet in February 2007. Amaechi had contacted Zeigler months before, and Zeigler connected Amaechi with the publicist Howard Bragman, who had assisted other gay athletes in coming out. Zeigler has also broken national stories including the late gay brother of NFL Hall of Famer Michael Irvin, transgender Div. 1 NCAA athlete Kye Allums, and a racial headline by ESPN in reference to Jeremy Lin.[2]

Zeigler presently lives in Los Angeles with his partner, Dan Pinar, a dentist. He previously lived in New York City where he was a research editor for a global financial services firm. He was previously a development executive for Disney Channel, focusing on their movie and music franchises before leaving in 2001.

Wade Davis

Wade Davis is a nationally-recognized speaker, activist, writer and educator. Davis is a former NFL football player who played for the Tennessee Titans, Washington Redskins and Seattle Seahawks, as well as two different teams within the NFL Europe league. Since retiring, he’s owned a media business through a partnership with the New York Times called InMotion Media, but currently he works at the Hetrick Martin Institute (HMI) as the Assistant Director of Job Readiness. At  HMI, he teaches at-promise youth how to define success for themselves and thrive in society.  His writings and interviews have appeared on Huffington Post, The NY Times, OutSports, TheGrio.com, and other media outlets, like President Obama’s Whitehouse blog. He has appeared on NPR, CNN, and BET. He  is also an LGBT Surrogate for President Obama. In the role of surrogate  he speaks at events on behalf of the President. Also he’s a member of the GLSEN sports advisory board – where he advocates to create safe spaces for LGBT youth.

Joanna Lohman

Joanna Lohman is a proud, “out”, professional athlete and an activist in the gay rights movement.  At Pennsylvania State University, Lohman was a 2-year captain and the first four-time First Team All Big Ten selection in the school’s history. Lohman’s 29-game career with the US Women’s National Team included two years as captain of the U-23 squad and seven appearances for the senior team. Joanna has traveled to over 20 countries including playing stints with the Washington Freedom, Philadelphia Independence, RCD Espanyol, and she is currently a member of the DC United Women. Outside of her professional sports career, Lohman is the Vice President of Tenant Consulting, a commercial real estate firm, an accomplished blogger, featured radio personality, and a versatile and engaging speaker. She is also the Co-Founder of JoLi Academy, an organization that raises women around the world using soccer as its vehicle. Lohman continues to speak out about her own personal journey in hopes of helping others find the strength to live an honest and authentic life. She was listed in the 2011 GPhilly Magazine as one of the “New Who’s Who” and in GO Magazine as one of the 2012 “100 Women We Love”.

Brian Sims

Brian Sims is an advocate, policy attorney and speaker, most notably on issues pertaining to LGBT rights. In 2012, he was elected to the Pennsylvania House of Representatives in the 182nd district.  Sims will be the first openly-gay state legislator in the history of the Pennsylvania General Assembly.  Sims was born in Washington D.C., as the son of two Army Lieutenant Colonels. He completed his undergraduate studies at Bloomsburg University, in Bloomsburg, Pennsylvania in 2001. In 2000, Sims was the co-captain of the Bloomsburg University football team, and was recognized as a scholar athlete. Following the longest season in the Division II schools history, Sims came out as gay. In doing so, the regional All-American and team captain became the only openly gay college football captain in NCAA history. Sims later earned an J.D. Degree in International and Comparative law at the Michigan State University School of Law in 2004. Sims served as the President of Equality Pennsylvania, and as the Chairman of the Gay and Lesbian Lawyers of Philadelphia (GALLOP), until he stepped down from both positions in 2011. In 2009, Sims joined the faculty of the Center for Progressive Leadership and the National Campaign Board of The Victory Fund. Additionally, he was selected as one of the Top 40 LGBT Attorneys Under 40 in the United States by the National LGBT Bar Association in 2010.

Helen Carroll

Helen Carroll leads the Sports Project at National Center for Lesbian Rights. She is well known in the sports world as an acclaimed national championship basketball coach from the University of North Carolina-Asheville. Carroll was a NCAA Athletic Director for 12 years, and now devotes all her efforts to fight homophobia in sports. She has worked on cases such as negotiating a settlement on behalf of Merry Stephens, a teacher and basketball coach with Bloomburg Independent School District in Texas, who was terminated because of her sexual orientation. Her expertise in the area of women’s collegiate athletics was essential in NCLR’s representation of former Penn State women’s basketball star Jennifer Harris against Lady Lions basketball coach Rene Portland and Penn State University.  Carroll works closely with major national sports organizations including the Women’s Sports Foundation, GLSEN’s Sports Project and the NCAA. She has been a dynamic speaker on panels with the NCAA, the Olympic Committee, Nike, the U.S. Tennis Association, The New York Times, the San Francisco 49ers, and many others. She was featured in Dee Mosbacher’s award-winning film, Out for a Change: Addressing Homophobia in Women’s Sports, and author Pat Griffin’s book, Strong Women, Deep Closets.

Keelin Godsey

Keelin Godsey is a 28-year-old FTM athlete. He had not transitioned medically and competed as a female while identifying as male. He came out his senior year of college at Bates University and was one of the first out transgender college athletes. When he came out there weren’t any policies on how to deal with transgender athletes. The NCAA and Bates worked together to create guidelines addressing transgender athletes in college sports. Keelin is a 16-time All-American in track and field never placing lower than 4th, a two-time national champion and holds the DIII national record in the hammer throw. He placed 5th at the 2010 U.S. national track and field championships and 7th at the 2008 Olympic trials. He placed 3rd in the 2011 U.S. National track and field championships and he went on to compete for the U.S. National team at the Pan American Games where he got 5th. He recently got 5th and the U.S. 2012 Olympic trials. He just recently retired from competing as a woman and is in the process to continue competing in the hammer as a male athlete. He currently works as a physical therapist in western Massachusetts and as a volunteer throws coach at a local college

Jeff Sheng

Jeff Sheng is an artist and photographer based in California.  He is known for his photo series, “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell,” about closeted U.S. military service members affected by the military policy of the same name, photographing almost 100 service members between 2009-2011.  His other series “Fearless,” a project he began in 2003, about “out” LGBT high school and college athletes, now has over 150 participants.  Sheng frequently exhibits and speaks about his work at various high schools, colleges and corporations, and the project has been exhibited at the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver, ESPN Headquarters, the 2009 International LGBT Human Rights Conference in Copenhagen, Denmark, and Nike World Headquarters in 2010.  For the 2012 Summer Olympics, he released a 10-minute video slideshow of “Fearless” that was exhibited at Pride House 2012 as part of the London Olympics, which marked the debut of the project in Great Britain.  Sheng has been profiled by the New York Times, the Los Angeles TimesCNNABC World News, the Huffington PostSlateNPR and by the BBC News.  His photography has also been published in Time MagazineNewsweek the New York Times Magazine.  Sheng holds a BA degree from Harvard University in Visual and Environmental Studies (filmmaking and photography, 2002), and he received his MFA in Studio Art from the University of California, Irvine, in 2007. Check out his new website http://www.fearlessproject.org/ that beautifully archives his Fearless Project.

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