Because of Title IX: Chris Voelz

Executive Director, Collegiate Women Sports Awards /// Steward/Ambassador, Women's Sports Foundation

Finish this sentence: “Because of Title IX...”

I love knowing that thousands of girls and women have the skill sets and learn the life lessons of sports participation that their brothers had been afforded for years.

How have the athletic and academic opportunities afforded to you because of Title IX impacted your life? Can you imagine your life without them?

Title IX offered a legal basis for social justice in sport and that was a concept on which I was raised. I was fortunate to ride the wave of Title IX throughout my entire professional career, and it became my lifework. Could I imagine my life without Title IX? No, i can’t imagine a world without half of people playing, moving, and competing.

Tell us about a woman who championed you in pursuing your goals. How did her influence inspire or affect you and your career?

My college basketball coach and academic advisor, Dr. Laurie Mabry from Illinois State University, who was president of AIAW, saw things in me before i saw them in myself. She methodically shared with me problems that needed solutions, challenges that needed to be met,  and dreams needing actualization. She set high expectations for my behavior and my growth. She then placed me in positions and offered experiences for me to enhance my leadership and advocacy skills. Her role modeling and my pursuit in those formative years served me well for the next decades.

How are you continuing to champion the next generation of women and girls in sports, and raise awareness on the importance Title IX?

When I see something, I say something! That is, I point out injustice and discrimination along with ways to remedy them. I am ever the educator and the advocate. I serve on the Advocacy Committee of the Women’s Sports Foundation and work with like-minded advocates to make a difference nationwide!

If you could send an empowering tweet to every woman and girl across the country, what would you send?

Use PMA every day in every way! Use Positive Mental Attitude to enhance your personal and professional lives; choose purpose over power and make a difference large and small.

See all our #BecauseofTitleIX stories here! »
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