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2003 Program

Our Program --> NCAA's Gay Issues in Collegiate Athletics: Getting from Here to There!

Be sure to join our mailing list for latest news releases and updates! See the FULL PROGRAM. See our bulletin board to engage others in a conversation about the topics in our program.

Also see:
+ High School Athletics Panel by PFLAG and GLSEN (Sat, Mar 27)
+ The Truth About Love - PFLAG Parents Talk About Their GLBT Children (Sat, Mar 27)
+ Fearless: A Photography Project on Openly Gay High School and Collegiate Athletes (All weekend)
+ Athlete Scholarship Fund Raising Dinner (separate fee) (Sat, Mar 27)
+ The Women’s Sports Foundation’s Project to Eliminate Homophobia panel and the showing of “It Takes a Team” (Sun, Mar 28)
+ Annual PFLAG Pride & Passion Party (Sun, Mar 28)

DayBeginning Time Duration Event
Sat, Mar 27, 2004 9:45 AM
11:45 AM
2 hours NCAA's Gay Issues in Collegiate Athletics: Getting from Here to There!


About the NCAA (www.ncaa.com

The National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) is a voluntary association of about 1,200 colleges and universities, athletic conferences and sports organizations devoted to the sound administration of intercollegiate athletics. Our many goals include: To initiate, stimulate and improve intercollegiate athletics programs for student-athletes and to promote and develop educational leadership, physical fitness, athletics excellence and athletics participation as a recreational pursuit.

Gay Issues in Collegiate Athletics: Getting from Here to There!

This session will consist of dialogue between and among the panelists and the audience to identify the current climate and issues facing GLBT collegiate athletes and athletic staff, and to recommend policy and action for implementation at the campus level. Panelists will initiate the discussion with brief introductory remarks, and proceed to exchanges with the audience through questions and challenges. This dialogue will result in an outcomes document that will assist athletics departments and campuses as a whole to a fuller understanding of the issues, and provide them recommendations to move to a positive athletics and campus environment responsive to the needs of GLBT student-athletes and staff.


  • Mary Wilfert, NCAA Assistant Director of Education Outreach (moderator)
  • Pat Griffin
  • Dan Woog
  • Lauren Costello
  • Pam Bockol
  • Andrea Zimbardi
  • Ryan Quinn
  • Sean Burns

Mary E. Wilfert, M.Ed., CHES is an assistant director in Education Outreach for the NCAA. She has administered the NCAA drug-education and drug-testing programs for 4 ˝ years. She serves as primary liaison to the NCAA Committee on Competitive Safeguards and Medical Aspects of Sports, the Association-wide committee charged with providing leadership on health and safety recommendations to the membership. Ms. Wilfert has worked in the health education field for over 20 years, planning, implementing and evaluating prevention programs to promote positive environments and empower individuals to make informed choices for lifelong health and success.

Pat Griffin is a professor in the Social Justice Education Program at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. She leads classes and workshops on sexism, racism, ableism, heterosexism/homophobia, and other forms of social injustice in education. Her research and writing interests focus on heterosexism/homophobia in education, lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender teachers and students, and heterosexism/homophobia in athletics, with a particular interest in women's sports. Dr. Griffin has written a book entitled, Strong Women, Deep Closets: Lesbian and Homophobia in Sports, published by Human Kinetics, 1998. She is also co-editor of Teaching For Diversity and Social Justice: A Sourcebook for Teachers and Trainers, Routledge, 1997.

For the past 20 years Dr. Griffin has led seminars on diversity issues and lesbian and gay issues in athletics at numerous colleges and universities as well as at coaches and athletic administrators' association meetings around the United States and Canada. She worked with the Project to Eliminate Homophobia in Sport to create the educational kit It Takes a Team: Making Sport Safe for Lesbian and Gay Athletes and Coaches. She served as an expert consultant on this topic for the Women's Sports Foundation, Out For a Change: Addressing Homophobia in Women's Sports (an educational video), the Gay, Lesbian, Straight Education Network, the Massachusetts Department of Education, and for numerous articles in the press, on television and in periodical publications. Dr. Griffin has appeared on ESPN, HBO Real Sports, and ABC Sports Outside the Lines.

Dr. Griffin played basketball and field hockey and swam at the University of Maryland and coached high school basketball and field hockey in Silver Spring, Maryland. She also coached swimming and diving at the University of Massachusetts. She was a member of the U.S. Field Hockey squad in 1971. She won a bronze medal in the triathlon at Gay Games IV in 1994 and a gold medal in the hammer throw at Gay Games V in 1998. She has had short stories and first person accounts selected for publication in Sportdykes: Stories from on and Off the Field, Tomboys: Tales of Dyke Derring-Do, A Whole Other Ball Game: Women's Literature on Women's Sport, Whatever It Takes: Women on Women's Sports.

Dan Woog is head soccer coach at Staples High School in Westport, Conn.; founder/ faculty adviser of the Gay/Straight Alliance, the first such organization at a public school in the state of Connecticut, and founder and co-facilitator of OutSpoken, a county-wide support group for gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgendered and questioning youth. His website is www.danwoog.com.

Dr. Lauren Costello is a team physician and staff physician at Princeton University. Dr. Costello is board certified in Emergency Medicine and Fellowship trained in Sports Medicine. She has been a team physician for 14 years. She is a member of the Competitive Safeguards Committee of NCAA. She is a member of the GLBT Task Force at Princeton University. She was a competitive athlete throughout high school and college and continues to enjoy a very active athletic lifestyle.

Pam Bolock:
My name is Pam Bockol and I worked as an athletic trainer for about 10 years in a variety of collegiate settings (Division I & III). I am also a queer-identified woman whose gender & sexual identity were greatly influenced by my work in athletics. The athletic departments where I worked, were for the most part very closeted environments, particularly amongst other GLBT colleagues. I have done a great deal of personal work and despite my lack of "out" role models, I am very comfortable with my queer identity and in my current work with the YMCA, I am very "out." I feel strongly about the importance of being "out" because I respect all of whom I am, and believe it is important to model that belief in my work and my life. I feel honored to be a part of the GLAF Conference's Collegiate panel, I look forward to learning with and from all the panelists and participants.

Andrea Zimbardi is a four-time All-SEC Academic Honor Roll and former senior co-captain of the University of Florida's softball team. A popular and talented athlete who overcame two knee surgeries to earn a starting position, Andrea hoped to play a key role in the Gator's drive to an NCAA Championship during her senior year. Instead, she was forced to watch from the sidelines as her allegations of discrimination due to sexual orientation were deemed as disrupting team cohesiveness.

In Jan. of 2004 the University of Fla. settled a legal action with Andrea represented by the National Center of Lesbian Rights in which both parties agreed that further training of the U of F coaches, staff and student-athletes concerning the rights of LGBT sports personnel and student-athletes would better serve the University in reaching the true potential of all athletes. Andrea now speaks nationwide on the necessity for fairness and equal opportunity for all athletes on and off the playing field.

Ryan Quinn was born and raised in Alaska and graduated in 2003 from the University of Utah (Business Administration). He competed for Utah's Nordic Ski Team for four years, culminating in a D1 NCAA Skiing Championship in 2003. Individually, Ryan was twice NCAA All-American in 2002 and 2003. He is now living and writing in Seattle.

Sean Burns served as captain of the tennis team while playing #1 singles and doubles for Holy Cross. After a stint on the professional tennis circuit, he took over the head men's tennis coach position at Santa Clara University. His teams enjoyed eight winning seasonas in nine years, earning the program's first-ever Division I national rankings in 2000, 2001 and 2002. Burns was selected West Coast Conference Coach of the Year four times. He recently graduated from Trinity College in Dublin, Ireland with an MBA.

If you would like to come, please consider seeking funding from your school or district's development funds, as well as the local Gay Straight Alliance, the local NCAA chapter. Please contact us if you seek this assistance.


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