NFL Punter Chris Kluwe Joins Athlete Ally Ambassador Program
It's a pleasure and an honor to announce that the NFL's Chris Kluwe has joined our Athlete Ally Ambassador Program. In doing so, he'll represent the first professinal athlete in a program that already includes a long list of committed college athletes across the country who encourage other athletes, coaches, and fans to challenge homophobia in sports. Kluwe has been an outspoken advocate for LGBT rights in the sporting arena and beyond for some time now, and I am truly excited to welcome him to the team.
Kluwe, the punter for the Minnesota Vikings, took it upon himself to stand up as an advocate earlier this year, writing op-ed pieces in defense of equal rights and those who fervently support them. His efforts have already done a lot of good in American football and sporting culture, and I'm confident that his work with Athlete Ally will allow this trend to continue.
When I founded Athlete Ally, the vision was for straight athletes to stand up for and respect gay athletes, because it's the right thing to do. Chris Kluwe epitomizes this vision and will help us take our efforts to more people. As our first pro Athlete Ally Ambassador, Kluwe will be a liaison between the organization and the NFL, help promote Athlete Ally's mission to end homophobia in sports by speaking out to his team, league, and fan base, and will encourage his colleagues to join in the effort.
Former New York Ranger and Athlete Ally Board Member Sean Avery believes in this vision too: "The time has come for professional athletics to reflect the reality of a new generation of Americans, and fans, who understand that love and commitment are the same regardless of sexual orientation. Chris has already helped expand understanding and we are excited he’s joining our program."
Kluwe said of his joining the program: "This is about extending respect and sportsmanship to everyone. It's a basic American idea, like football itself."
The entire team at Athlete Ally is thrilled to have this exceptional athlete on board, and I hope Kluwe's involvement with Athlete Ally will spur more professional athletes around the world to stand up and support equal rights, and to do their part at this crucial juncture in the movement for LGBT equality.