Not an uncommon pairing, but this time it isn’t about what you might think. Out former NFL player Wade Davis will be the featured speaker at the annual FIGHT gala Dec. 5 at the Union League. Davis came out in 2012, talking about what it was like to be gay and closeted.
“Philadelphia FIGHT chose Davis to be the featured speaker because of his commitment to health, fitness and fighting all types of discrimination and stigma,” said FIGHT director of development and communications Chip Alfred.
Davis continues to be an agent for change as an advocate, educator and public speaker on equal rights, gender and race, and is the executive director of the You Can Play Project. He has also worked with numerous organizations, such as the Minority AIDS Institute, to bring awareness to issues of sexism, classism, poverty and homelessness. Previous featured speakers and honorees include former governor Ed Rendell and Dr. Luis Montaner from the Wistar Institute.
Visit FIGHT.org for more information on the gala and FIGHT programs.
So what are athletes’ concerns when coming out?
NLGJA Philly is hosting a panel discussion and Q&A about some of the issues and challenges of coming out as a pro athlete. Some of the panelists will be participants at a hearing in Harrisburg earlier that day and will address the assembly on LGBT civil rights and how they intersect with sports and athletics. The speakers include ESPN’s Kate Fagan, formerly of the Philadelphia Inquirer; triathlete and public speaker Chris Mosier; and Rutgers grad and swimmer Sean Smith.
Yours truly will also be attending as a media sports-writer representative, along with a few other to-be-named panelists. The discussion will be centered on media coverage of LGBT athletes and how sports figures manage coming out of the closet to their teammates, coaches and fans, whether in the locker room or in the public eye. There will be a Q&A immediately following.
The conversation continues with a cocktail reception immediately following, 7-9 p.m. Oct. 2 at Tabu. There is no charge to attend or participate.
Ain’t no river wide enough
Congratulations to Bob Breitel and Caroline Stein, two members of the Philadelphia Fins Aquatics Club who participated in the 5K swim Sept. 14 in the Potomac River and came in first in their age groups! Breitel completed the swim 21st overall with a time of 1:11 and Stein finished at 1:35.
Congratulate them at the next Fins social, 5 p.m. Sept. 26 at Knock, and learn more about the Fins at philadelphiafins.org.
• Go! Athletes is this month’s highlighted organization at Sports Night at Tabu, 7-9 p.m. Sept. 20 at, where else, Tabu.
• Philadelphia Falcons soccer team has begun fall pick-up play from 6 p.m.-dusk Tuesdays and Thursdays at Edgely Fields, weather permitting; Falcons-soccer.org.
Keep the entire LGBTQ sports community up to date with your games, tournament, fundraisers and clothing-optional Halloween parties. Email [email protected].