About Athlete Ally

Sports remains one of the greatest socialization mechanisms in the world — it communicates values without relying on any one language, and its most successful participants are known and respected globally. And yet, an entire community of people remain systematically excluded from sport.

Athlete Ally believes that everyone should have equal access, opportunity, and experience in sports — regardless of your sexual orientation, gender identity or gender expression. Our mission is to end homophobia and transphobia in sport and to activate the athletic community to exercise their leadership to champion LGBTQI+ equality.

Our Victories

Athlete Ally is proud of our history in working to create LGBTQI+ inclusive athletic environments, and of our efforts to mobilize athletes, teams and leagues to use their platform to champion equality. Learn more about our work throughout 2022 in our 2022 Annual Report.

Some of our recent victories have included:

  • Creating the landmark campaign, Principle 6, which successfully lobbied the International Olympic Committee to include sexual orientation in the Olympic Charter.
  • Co-authoring the NCAA’s first-ever policy and resource guide on LGBTQ issues for all coaches, athletes, and administrators.
  • Working with the NBA, NCAA, and ACC on their historic decisions to move the competitions from North Carolina in the wake of anti-LGBTQ law HB2.
  • Launching the historic Athletic Equality Indexa first of its kind ranking of the LGBTQ inclusiveness of collegiate athletic departments
  • Partnering with transgender high school wrestler Mack Beggs to publish a PSA pushing back against the anti-trans bathroom bill introduced in Texas Special Session. That session concluded without the passing of an anti-LGBTQ bill.
  • Successfully launching a global campaign calling on FIBA to overturn its discriminatory ban on players competing in hijabs.
  • Leading the successful #WomenInFIFA campaign, engaging more than 150 Olympic and professional athletes in calling on FIFA reforms to include greater representation of women and increased support for women’s football.
  • Leading athlete, league and team participation in policy-focused campaigns to persuade Massachusetts governor Charlie Baker to protect transgender people from discrimination in public spaces in 2016.
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Our Founding Story

Hudson Taylor was a rare breed of division one wrestler and thespian. As a three-time All-American wrestler at the University of Maryland, he was ranked 2nd in the country heading into his senior season. He was, in addition, a theatre major, and the two worlds couldn’t have been more different on the topic of LGBTQ respect and inclusion. In theatre, Hudson had friends and classmates coming out and being accepted and welcomed. But on the wrestling mat, homophobic and sexist rhetoric and actions were rampant.

To stand in solidarity with the LGBTQ community and confront the marginalization of LGBTQ people in sport, he decided to wear an LGBTQ equality sticker on his headgear. Though he encountered criticism from his teammates, he received national media attention and thousands of emails from parents and closeted athletes encouraged by his advocacy. That got Hudson thinking… if he could achieve that impact as a wrestler, in a sport that isn’t the most popular, what if he had been a football player, a team, or an entire league.

This experience inspired Hudson to launch Athlete Ally.

Our Team

Hudson Taylor

Founder, Executive Director & Board Member

Hudson Taylor (he/him) is the founder and Executive Director of Athlete Ally, a nonprofit organization working to dismantle the systems of oppression that isolate, exclude and endanger LGBTQI+ people.

Under Taylor’s leadership, Athlete Ally educates athletic communities at all levels — sport governing bodies, teams, and individual athletes — to understand obstacles to inclusion for LGBTQI+ people in sports and how they can build inclusive communities on their teams or within their organizations. This includes launching Champions of Inclusion, an online curriculum providing coaches and athletic departments with education and resources around critical issues facing LGBTQI+ athletes and tools for creating an inclusive environment for all.

In addition, Athlete Ally works to ensure athletic communities’ policies are as LGBTQI+ inclusive as they should be. Under Taylor’s stewardship, Athlete Ally works closely with teams and institutions to develop clear and accessible policies around LGBTQI+ inclusion. In 2013, Taylor co-authored the NCAA’s first-ever handbook for college athletes, coaches and administrators providing recommendations, instructions and guidelines around best practices and policies for creating LGBTQIA+ inclusive athletic cultures. More recently, the organization launched the Athletic Equality Index (AEI) to measure LGBTQI+ inclusion policies and practices in college athletics. Taylor is also a powerful public speaker, sharing his story of allyship and advocacy both in and through sports.

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AC Dumlao

Chief of Staff

AC Dumlao (they/he) is the Chief of Staff at Athlete Ally. Prior to joining Athlete Ally, AC was the Director of Stakeholder Engagement at the Transgender Legal Defense & Education Fund (TLDEF), where they led The Name Change Project, connecting low-income trans individuals with pro bono volunteer attorneys from top law firms and corporate in-house counsel departments. AC also led TLDEF’s education initiatives, working with companies' HR and D&I departments and LGBTQ+ ERGs and BRGs to advise on trans and non-binary inclusive policies, such as best practices on sharing gender pronouns in the workplace.

AC is the creator of the Facebook page “Call Me They,” where they share news and commentary from their perspective as a queer trans non-binary first-generation Filipinx-American. For this work, AC was named a NYC/WorldPride Community Hero, during the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall Uprising. Other highlights of their work include co-hosting an advance screening/live talkback with Lisa Ling for the CNN Original Series’ episode “This is Life with Lisa Ling: Gender Fluidity.” AC was also named an “emerging voice” by NBC Asian America for their inaugural “Redefine A to Z” series and featured in Mashable’s “30 Days of Pride: The LGBTQ figures making history right now.”

Additionally, AC is passionate about providing representation to queer and trans young people of color and has given keynotes at high schools and colleges across the country. An alum of Vassar College, AC serves as co-chair of Vassar’s LGBTQ+ alums group and Board Director for Vassar’s Alumnae/i Association. At school, AC majored in Drama and Psychology, and they have a storied past life both onstage and backstage, from community theatres to Off-Broadway. Much like in sport, AC’s arts background instilled the guiding principles of their work and their life including the importance of empathetic leadership, teamwork, community, and resilience.

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Anne Lieberman

Director, Policy and Programs

Anne Lieberman (they/them) is a social justice strategist, sport policy wonk and lifelong athlete. Currently, Anne serves as the Director of Policy and Programs for Athlete Ally, a nonprofit organization working to dismantle the structures of oppression that isolate, exclude and endanger LGBTQI+ people in sport. Anne has over a decade of experience in advancing LGBTQI+ rights and gender equity globally, including leading grantmaking and advocacy efforts in South and Southeast Asia for American Jewish World Service (AJWS) and two years in Thailand on a Fulbright Fellowship conducting research on gender and sexuality in Muay Thai. Previously, Anne worked as a researcher for the Bronx African American History Project (BAAHP) and was awarded a Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture Fellowship. Anne holds an M.A. from Columbia University in Human Rights and a B.A. in African and African American Studies and Women's Studies from Fordham University. Anne is a 3x national champion Muay Thai Fighter and coach and heads USA Muay Thai’s Gender Equality Commission.

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Emet Marwell

Manager, Campus Chapter Program

Emet Marwell (he/him) is a lifelong athlete, intersectional feminist, and passionate advocate for LGBTQ inclusion. As a Jewish transgender person of color, Emet’s interest in race, religion, mental health, class, ability, and LGBTQ identities stems from his personal experiences. Emet promotes diversity, equity, and inclusion at the collegiate department, campus, and national levels, including as a member of the NCAA Division III LGBTQ Working Group which he joined in 2017. He is currently working towards an M.S. in Exercise & Sport Studies at Smith College. Emet coaches field hockey at Mount Holyoke College where he was a player then team manager during his undergraduate years. Just prior to joining Athlete Ally, Emet worked as a fitness trainer for people living with Parkinson’s Disease at DopaFit Parkinson’s Movement Center in Southampton, MA. He remains passionate about wellness within the Parkinson’s community. In his free time, Emet enjoys hiking with his dog Foxtrot.

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Gio Santiago

Senior Field Organizer

Giovonni Santiago (he/him), is a transgender advocate, military veteran and founder of META Center Inc, a non-profit dedicated to educating, motivating and inspiring transgender youth and young adults in need of resources and support. Being able to assist youth and young adults through their journey of transitioning in whatever form they need is the focus of META. Most recently he held the position of Northeast Ohio Regional Organizer at Equality Ohio. Santiago is a trusted voice in the LGBTQ community facilitating workshops at TransOhio, Trans in the CLE, the Philadelphia Trans Wellness Conference, Cleveland Clinic, various colleges/universities and high schools.

Santiago was named one of Cleveland Magazine's Most Interesting People for 2018, was nominated for and made NBC News NBCOut’s #Pride30 list, and was selected as Equality Ohio’s 2018 Advocate Honoree for Northeast Ohio. Also in 2018, Gio walked in New York Fashion Week in the Dapper Q show, which is the largest show for LGBTQ models. In 2019 he was the Keynote Speaker for the Transgender Job fair hosted by METRO Health, and featured in Men’s Health magazines that same year. His connection to sport has been lifelong beginning at age 5, and truly stuck when he played 4 sports in high school. Santiago loves all things connected to sports, after coaching multiple sports for JumpStart Sports for 3 years, then working for Nike for 5 years, he wanted to work in sports more intentionally. Most recently Santiago has been named the LGBTQ Youth Sports Director which is a part of the West 117th Foundation. A program which he created, and is a first of its kind in the country, holding a partnership with The Cleveland Cavaliers. He was also just recognized as The Cleveland Cavaliers “Diff Maker” at their Pride Night. He holds Associate degrees in Early Childhood Education, Life Coaching and Mentoring, and Public Administration all from Lorain County Community College.

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Sydney Taylor

Policy & Programs Associate

Sydney Taylor (she/her) is the Associate of Policy and Programs at Athlete Ally.

Prior to joining Athlete Ally, Sydney was the Diversity, Equity, and Inclusivity Intern for the City of Stamford Government. In this role, Sydney updated the City’s Employee Handbook with more inclusive language and removed all gender-based references. She conducted research on youth mental health, affordable housing, and minority-owned businesses for the allocation of ARPA (American Rescue Plan Act) Funds for the City. Sydney also assisted Athlete Ally in the development and execution of the organization’s Athlete Activism Summit in 2022 and 2023.

Sydney recently graduated from the College of William & Mary with a Bachelor’s in Sociology. She competed on the Women’s Volleyball team and served as the President of the Student-Athlete Advisory Committee during her senior year. In this position, Sydney curated the “You Belong” campaign and associated social media content as part of the department's DEI efforts. The campaign was aimed at addressing discrimination within the William and Mary Athletics department and played a pivotal role in promoting the value of diversity in recruiting student-athletes. The campaign received the College’s 2022 Values in Action Award.

As a woman of color and a former collegiate athlete, Sydney is excited about joining the Athlete Ally team and contributing to their ongoing efforts to level the playing field for underrepresented athletes and communities.

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Joanna Hoffman

Director, Communications

Joanna Hoffman (she/her) has worked in nonprofit communications for over a decade, with expertise in using strategic digital engagement to guide audiences towards social action. Previously, she worked as a Communications Manager at Peace is Loud where she managed organization-wide communications, including a combined digital audience of over 100,000, to amplify the voices of women peace leaders. Prior to this, she was the Special Projects Manager at Women Deliver, a global organization advocating for the health, rights, and well-being of girls and women, where she worked on Women Deliver’s triennial global conferences and the development of advocacy materials and engagement strategies. She has a Masters of Public Administration in International Public Policy and Nonprofit Management from New York University. Joanna is a Lambda Literary and Pushcart Prize-nominated poet, and was honored by the (Obama) White House in 2015 as a Champion for Change for LGBTQ Advocacy Through Art. She is also a proud member of LGBTQ running club Front Runners New York.

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T Mitsock

Communications Associate

T Mitsock (she/her) is a designer and writer with a background in nonprofit communications. Prior to joining Athlete Ally, T worked with the Transgender Legal Defense and Education Fund (TLDEF) as their Communications Consultant, designing visuals and amplifying public education efforts. Her recent collage and written work has been featured in CONSTRUCT ZINE, and she serves as one of this year’s curators for Irondale’s On Women Festival. T holds a B.F.A. from Boston University School of Theatre, where she was awarded the Bette Davis Prize. She is passionate about creating artful resources that center, benefit, and celebrate trans people, especially young trans women.

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Anna Baeth

Director, Research

Anna Baeth (she/her) is a critical feminist scholar and a cultural studies practitioner of sport. Her research centers on the gendering of sport spaces, the eternally moving body, and social movements and sport. A native of Frederick, MD, Baeth has a PhD from the University of Minnesota in Kinesiology, with a concentration in Sport Sociology. Baeth was a research assistant in the Tucker Center for Research on Girls & Women in Sport and a teaching assistant in the UMN Department of Kinesiology. Beyond her scholarly pursuits, Baeth is a perennial coach and advocate for cultural awareness in sport spaces. Holding an M.S. in Exercise and Sport Studies from Smith College (MA), Baeth has been an assistant lacrosse coach at Hamline University (MN), Head Field Hockey Coach at Oberlin College and Conservatory (OH), and assistant field hockey / lacrosse coach at Mt. Holyoke College (MA). In 2009, she rode her bicycle cross country with the non-profit Bike and Build to raise awareness of affordable housing issues. Baeth graduated from Swarthmore College (PA) with a degree in Sociology / Anthropology, Peace Studies, and Educational Studies, where she also founded the not-for-profit, Chester Neighborhood Bike Works.

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AJ Kurtz

Research Associate

AJ Kurtz (they/she) is studying community organization at Penn State University with a focus on student organizing for LGBTQI+ inclusion. They have been teaching writing and developing inclusive curriculum for students in high school through college since 2013. In 2020, she joined the adidas x AEI research fellows. Since then, they have focused on developing resources and ongoing meetings for religiously affiliated institutions as well as forming partnerships with other organizations and managing communications around the AEI.

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Sharif Dodd

Associate, Development

Sharif Dodd (he/him) is Athlete Ally’s Development Associate, assisting the Director of Development in advancing the organization’s fundraising efforts. Prior to joining Athlete Ally, Sharif worked as Member Services Manager for Lambda Legal, working closely with regional and national development staff to expand membership programs and ensure donors at all levels received the best service possible.

Sharif previously held positions at The National LGBTQ Task Force, SAGE (Services & Advocacy for GLBT Elders) and the Brooklyn Youth Chorus. Before his entry into the non-profit sector, Sharif worked as a Delinquency Control Counselor with Navy Federal Credit Union and as a Financial Associate with Citigroup.

Sharif is an active fiction writer and former Theater/Performing Arts graduate.

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Torey Mill

Manager, Engagement and Development

Torey Mill (She/Her) is the Manager of Engagement and Development for Athlete Ally and a lifelong lover of sport.

Prior to joining the Athlete Ally team, Torey spent 5 years working in the environmental nonprofit sector. Most recently she was the Program Manager for the Coalition of Oregon Land Trusts, where she supported the coalition’s operations and development, coordinated their Pro Bono legal program, facilitated partnership building, and more. Prior to this, Torey served as a liaison between the Montana Association of Land Trusts and the US Department of Agriculture to bolster federal funding and advance the pace of agricultural land conservation in Montana. Additionally, Torey is an educator with G.E.T Phluid, a comprehensive diversity and inclusion training program curated to provide organizations with the skills to spearhead inclusion initiatives and create affirming spaces in the workplace for the LGBTQIA+ community.

Torey graduated from Stanford University with a BS in Science, Technology and Society—a multidisciplinary study that focuses on the intersection of political theory, scientific innovation, and the cultural values that shape the direction of technological advancements. While at Stanford, Torey competed on the Track & Field and Cross Country teams. Torey is a two-time high school All-American and national record holder, an eight-time Pennsylvania state champion, and an inductee into the Pennsylvania Track & Field Hall of Fame. In 2010, she was named the Gatorade Track & Field Athlete of the Year in Pennsylvania.

In her free time, you will most likely find Torey surfing, skateboarding, or trail running with her dog Supai, a dingo that she rescued from the Havasupai reservation in the Grand Canyon.

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Laken King

Partnerships & Operations Coordinator

Laken King (she/her) is the Partnerships & Operations Coordinator at Athlete Ally.

Prior to joining Athlete Ally, Laken previously worked as the Administrative Coordinator at Columbia University's Center for American Studies. She is also the co-founder of Worldgirls, a doll, lifestyle, and entertainment company for children on a mission to change the world. Her constant source of inspiration has been her colorful upbringing in Brooklyn, NY where she straddled different worlds and met people from all walks of life.

Laken comes from a family of tennis players and started playing tennis at the age of four with her twin sister. She played junior tennis competitively for the United States Tennis Association's Eastern Section. Laken graduated from Amherst College with a BA in Sociology.

During the pandemic, Laken earned her Certificate in Television Writing from UCLA Extension. She is all-around passionate about social innovation & thoughtful storytelling, and creating a more celebratory, inclusive world.

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Joy Bunson

Co-Chair, Board of Trustees

Joy Bunson is an accomplished Human Resources executive with over 20 years of experience in financial services. She currently runs a consulting and coaching practice and specializes in areas related to organizational culture and effectiveness, including leadership development, change management, diversity and work-life. Her clients come from both the for profit and not for profit sectors and have included Moody’s, PwC, Royal Bank of Canada, Ford Models, Baker & Mckenzie, the Families and Work Institute, the Young Women’s Leadership Network and others.

Until mid-2006, she was the Senior Vice President and executive in charge of Global Human Resources Development at JPMorganChase. Her responsibilities included corporate leadership, diversity, talent and performance management, work-life, learning and education, and Human Resources branding and communications programs for JPMorganChase’s 160,000 employees worldwide.

Under Ms. Bunson’s tenure, her Development team oversaw the organizational aspects of three of the industry’s largest mergers: Chase-Chemical bank, Chase-J.R Morgan and the JPMorganChase – Bank One merger. She led the expansion of JPMorganChase’s back-up child care network across the U.S. into the largest onsite corporate network in the country; the implementation of a formal diversity planning process that yielded substantial changes to the company’s climate and demographics; and the development of several public-private partnerships, including Smart Start, a community based scholarship and career development program and Comfort for Kids, a program launched after 9/11 to help parents and caregivers recognize and deal with trauma in young children and later adapted for use worldwide. During this time, JPMorganChase received numerous awards for its work-life and diversity initiatives. These included the Catalyst award in 2001, recognition as one of the top 10 companies for working mothers in 2003 and 2006, and placement on numerous *best companies” lists.

In 2005, Ms. Bunson was honored as a leader in the work-life movement by the Families and Work Institute, which awarded her its Work-Life legacy award for her pioneering work on supporting the child care needs of JPMorganChase employees and integrating diversity and work-life into corporate culture.

Ms. Bunson holds an M.S. in Organizational Psychology from New York University and a B.A. in Ameri-can Studies from Cornell University. She resides in Manhattan with her husband and son.

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Nate Richards

Co-Chair, Board of Trustees

Nathan J. Richards (he/him) is the Chief of Staff of TransPerfect, the world's leading provider of language and technology solutions for business. He attended Georgetown University's Walsh School of Foreign Service, and during his time there, began his career with TransPerfect as an intern and eventually went on to originate the Global Marketing and Communications Department. After several years in the not-for-profit sector, he founded his own consulting firm, Nathan J Richards + Associates in 2013 in Seattle. His interest in global business, change management, and company culture led him back to his current role at TransPerfect, in which he oversees employee-relations, diversity initiatives, process development, and philanthropic investments. He resides in New York City and rural Pierce County in Washington State. He is an avid supporter of the Seattle Sounders Football Club and his nephew’s youth soccer team.

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Laura Clise

Board Member

Laura Clise is a corporate sustainability leader and 2013 Aspen Institute First Mover Fellow. At AREVA Inc., Laura established led the Sustainable Development department, overseeing the company's first regional sustainability strategy and supplier diversity program. She subsequently served as the Director of External Communications & Corporate Citizenship. Before joining AREVA Inc., Laura’s sustainability experience included work for the U.N. Global Compact, Intel Corporation, and Business for Social Responsibility. Laura received an MBA from the Thunderbird School of Global Management, and a BA in International Relations from Carleton College. She received an Exceptional Individual Achievement Award from the Human Rights Campaign for her work on marriage equality in Maryland and is a frequent speaker a host of issues, including sustainability initiatives, diversity and inclusion, and employee engagement.

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Carin Levine Ehrenberg

Board Member

Carin Levine Ehrenberg (she/her) is a clinical psychologist in private practice in Manhattan. Over the past 20 years, Carin has spent equal time working with her clients as she has devoted to community service and organizing in several organizations. She was most recently the president Greenwich Village Little League (GVLL) which annually serves over a thousand players ages 4 to 16. At GVLL Carin has helped build programs for the league and advocate in local politics on behalf of youth sports. Carin also serves on the board of P3 Baseball and Softball and is an advocate for youth as a representative of the organization Pier 40 Champions. In addition to her leadership in youth sports, Carin has focused on diversity and advocacy as a volunteer for the past decade at NYC independent schools LREI and Poly Prep Country Day. Carin has joined the Athlete Ally board in part to expand the organization’s work with youth athletes.

Carin received her Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology from St. John’s University and her B.A. in Psychology from the University of Michigan. She lives in Manhattan with her husband and their two sons.

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Sean James

Board Member

Sean James is a former college athlete and NFL player who has been able to utilize his experiences as an athlete to truly understand what young student athletes need to do in order to realize their full potential. Sean has been workingwith children for over 25 years. During that time, his programs have evolved to meet his widening vision of the ever-growing needs of today’s youth, and the ways in which he can help them to meet those needs.

In 2007, Sean created Sean James Student Athletes (SJSA) as a means of providing youth with the opportunity to live out their dreams. In 2011, Sean’s philanthropic work was recognized by Buick and theNCAA in their very first Human Highlight Reel that celebrates human achievement by shining a light on those student-athletes that continue to show leadership and dedication once they complete their academic programs and become active in their communities to have a positive influence on the lives of others.

In 2012, Sean founded Be In The Know About Bullying to provide education and mentorship to students in order to help them be leaders in their communities, and combat the bullying epidemic faced by our nation.Sean travels the country spreading awareness and educating students on leadership and on bullyingthrough the Be In The Know About Bullying curriculum, and through speaking directly to children alongside Be In The Know’s many other NFL ambassadors. His passion for and dedication to children helps him to inspire them to take action in their own schools and communities.

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Jordyn Lexton

Board Member

Jordyn Lexton, Founder and CEO of Drive Change an organization in Brooklyn New York that fosters quality employment opportunities for formerly incarcerated young adults coming home from jail. Prior to starting Drive Change Jordyn was a teacher at the high school inside of the jail complex on Rikers Island. Jordyn is a 2015 Echoing Green Fellow and their six word bio is: Not Cut Out For The Sidelines.

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Drew Martin

Board Member

Drew Martin became Executive Senior Associate Athletics Director for External Affairs at the University of Texas in June of 2018, bringing an extensive external services background ranging from trademark licensing and brand management to marketing, social media and communications. He joined the Longhorns staff after spending six years at TCU, where he was Associate AD for Marketing and Licensing.

Prior to TCU, Martin spent a year as a Regional Marketing Manager for Pepsi covering west Tennessee, Arkansas, north Mississippi and Louisiana.

Martin began his full-time career at Texas A&M where he gained valuable experience handling several different roles. He joined the staff as an Assistant Sports Information Director in 1997, and in 2000 was promoted to Director of Internet and Special Projects/Brand Manager. He then assumed the role of Assistant AD from 2006-11.

A Memphis, Tenn., native and 1996 graduate of Mississippi State University with a degree in communications and public relations, Martin was a student assistant and eventually a graduate intern for the Bulldogs' media relations department. He was a media relations assistant at the Big 12 Conference for a short period after Mississippi State.

Martin is a member of the NCAA Common Ground Leadership Team. The group's focus is to advance discussion around the intersection of LGBT student-athletes at faith-based institutions, as well as people of faith at private secular organizations.

Martin and his husband, Blake Macon, were married in Fort Worth in 2015.

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Pat Noonan

Board Member

Pat is the Chief Financial Officer at FloSports, a direct-to-consumer, subscription-based sports media company. He currently oversees Finance, Accounting and Business Intelligence after previously holding the position of SVP of Business Development at the company. Prior to FloSports, Pat was a venture capital investor at Austin Ventures and Commonwealth Capital Ventures. He is an alumnus of the Stanford Graduate School of Business and Harvard College.

In college, Pat played rugby and soccer. Now he avoids running at all costs but remains an avid skier and weightlifter. Originally from Boston, Pat now calls Austin, Texas home. Pat and his husband, Stace Houk, were married in St. Petersburg, Florida in November 2022.

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Krishna Omkar

Board Member

Based in London, Krishna practises as a corporate lawyer at King & Spalding with a wide practice acting for public and private companies in cross-border transactions, mergers & acquisitions, private equity, capital markets, as well as the corporate aspects of restructuring and insolvency. He regularly advises on corporate governance as well as shareholder activism and defence. Krishna advises clients across a range of sectors, including financial services, life sciences, infrastructure and energy, sports and entertainment, and private wealth. He has particular interest in emerging markets, especially India; and is named in Legal 500 Asia Pacific 2020 for India expertise. Krishna was named a Future Leader by the Financial Times in its Executive Diversity Report in 2018, received a 2019 Asian Achievers Award, and the inaugural Rising Star Award in the 2019 British Legal Awards. He has spoken at the World Economic Forum in Davos in 2019 and 2020.

Krishna is also the founder of Return on Equity, a new economic and philosophical agenda to rethink the meaning of capitalism in a model that harnesses the power of inclusion, empowerment, and social change as a strategy for sustainability. Through Return on Equity, Krishna is influencing a different and new kind of philosophy, where corporations rely on inclusive disruption to increase empowerment, activating investors, consumers, and employees as economic actors, putting in place a virtuous cycle of wealth creation within a sustainable circular economy.

Krishna worked on the initiative to decriminalise same-sex relations in India, which was successful in September 2018, and in 2019 was invited by the UN Assistant Secretary General to co-lead a consultation on the collaboration of the private sector and civil society in the advancement of LGBTQI+ rights.

Krishna is a lover of the arts and design, dogs and animals, food and drink, and travel. He received a BA in English Literature from St Stephen’s College, the University of Delhi; an MPhil in Sociology from the University of Oxford; and spent time as a visiting researcher at Sciences Po / Institut d'études politiques de Paris.

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Lia Parifax

Board Member, Co-Founder

Lia Mandaglio Parifax is an attorney and social justice activist. She directs centralized Learning, Monitoring and Evaluation, and Knowledge Management at the Arcus Foundation and plays a legal and governance role. Prior to joining Arcus, Lia served as Managing Director, Global Initiatives at Out Leadership, an advisory firm specializing in LGBT business and talent development. In 2011, she co-founded Athlete Ally, a nonprofit advancing LGBTQI+ rights through sports. In this capacity and as a current trustee, Lia has strategized groundbreaking social justice initiatives in sports for which she was named to Vanity Fair's Hall of Fame by Congressman Barney Frank. Lia has been published in several leading peer-reviewed rhetoric and legal journals, including the American Bar Association’s Public Contracts Law Journal, the Italian American Bar Association’s Digest, the California International Law Journal, and the International Journal of Law in Context of Cambridge University Press. She has contributed to several opinion pieces in outlets like The Huffington Post and CNN, and she served as an editor of the book, Keys to College Studying: Becoming an Active Thinker, Prentice Hall (2nd ed.) Lia practiced structured finance law at Alston & Bird LLP in New York City, received her juris doctor from The George Washington University Law School, and graduated first in her class from Lafayette College.

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Jeanne Schneider

Board Member

Jeanne (She/Her) currently serves as Director, NCAA Sports Marketing and Licensing at adidas. After graduating from Western Michigan University, she started her career in Chicago in advertising where she spent 10 years honing her specialty in sport and entertainment sponsorships. During that time, she helped launch Verizon’s NFL partnership and acted as strategic lead in planning and execution for Anheuser-Busch’s sport vertical.

These opportunities went on to shape a career-long interest in harnessing the passion that people have for sport into driving brand initiatives. She took a stop on her path to earn an MBA from the University of Oregon, after which she landed a role with adidas.

With the privilege and responsibility of managing relationships and budgets with 12 Power Five conference universities, Jeanne continuously collaborates with partners to create space to discuss ways for each to build programming to uplift the diverse collegiate sport communities. The result is programs that bring equitable NIL opportunities, McLendon Minority Leadership Initiative fellows and Athlete Ally resources directly to athletic departments. Her mission is to approach partnership marketing holistically, considering how to drive business and social impact simultaneously.

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Bonnie Thurston

Board Member

Bonnie Thurston is the WNBA’s Director of Player Programs and has been at the league for 17 years. In this role, Bonnie handles off-court matters for the WNBA’s players including such things as marketing appearances and professional development and everything in between. In addition to her work with the WNBA’s players, Bonnie co-founded and serves as co-chair for NBA Pride, the first LGBTQ+ employee resource team in professional sports. She is passionate about inclusion in sports. Bonnie lives in NYC with her wife, a professional dancer, and her two children, Ella and Jasper.

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Louis Vega

Board Member

Louis A. Vega serves as president of Dow North America and vice president, Government Affairs & Advocacy, North America.

Over his 20+ year career at Dow, Vega has gained wide-ranging expertise, honed his strong business acumen, and led significant growth projects and business development programs. All of this has been augmented through his extensive international experience, which includes roles in Horgen, Switzerland; Washington D.C.; Dubai, UAE; Midland, Michigan; New York, New York; and Melbourne, Australia.

Previously, from 2011 to 2017, Vega served as chief of staff of the Office of the Chairman and CEO. Later, he was named vice president of Dow’s Olympic & Sports Solutions business, where he served from 2014 to 2019. He most recently headed up Dow’s presence in Australia and New Zealand as president and managing director for the two countries from 2016 to 2019.

A passionate leader who advocates for inclusion and works towards full equality for all, Vega strives to demonstrate how diversity can ensure enterprise success and deliver bottom line results. He was named to Australia’s 50 outstanding LGBTI business executives in 2018 and 2019. A philanthropist and member of many nonprofit boards, Vega is also a proud multi-year member of the OUTstanding LGBT+ Role Models list.

Vega is a trustee of the Chemical Industry Labor-Management Committee and a member of the Trilateral Commission. And, in 2015, his alma mater, New Mexico State University, honored him with a Distinguished Alumni Award.

Prior to joining Dow, Vega had a series of roles in Washington, D.C. – from Capitol Hill to the Executive Branch – over the span of 12 years.

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Perry Williams

Board Member

Perry Hughes Williams leads strategy and operations for Under Armour’s Innovation team where he manages a portfolio of projects across apparel, footwear and connected fitness. He is also the co-chair of Under Armour’s LGBTq+ employee resource group, UNIFIED. He has 10 years of experience in engineering, project management, and corporate strategy in various industries and has a bachelor of science in mechanical engineering from Georgia Tech and an MBA from the University of Michigan. A native of Jackson, MS, Perry currently lives in Baltimore, MD with his husband, Tim, and their retriever Zoe.

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Robert L. York, Jr.

Board Member

Robert currently serves as the Senior Director of Development at NMAC in Washington, DC. Robert previously served as the executive director for Capital Pride and as director of AIDS Walk Washington. In 2005 the Washington Blade named him the Outstanding Male Hero in the LGBT community and in 2014 he was honored with Capital Pride’s Larry Stansbury Award for distinguished service. Robert received his B.A in journalism/public relations from the University of Central Oklahoma. Robert currently serves as an Ambassador for The Trevor Project DC chapter, a board member for the Capital Pride Alliance and is also a published author. Robert is also an active team player with the Washington DC Federal Triangles Soccer Club, CAPS Softball, Stonewall DC dodge ball and Cheer DC which he founded. Robert was also a spirit leader with the Washington Freedom Women's Professional Soccer Team from 2002 - 2012 as well as the Washington Capitals Professional Hockey Team and worked on the executive staff for the original Wonder Woman, Lynda Carter.

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