The Atlanta Women in Sports Luncheon, set to take place on January 31st, 2019 just before the Super Bowl which is set to take place three days later in Atlanta, Georgia. The luncheon will feature panel discussions with leaders sharing their stories, knowledge and insights in regard to the diversity and representation of women in sports. The panels will include women that represent a wide variety of different roles in sports. Including journalists, athletes, scientists, executives, business leaders, trainers, coaches. Some of the panelists include Dr. Jennifer Welter, Patrina King, Simone Edwards and Amazin LêThi and will include three panels; “Trailblazer Women in Sports”, “Collegiate Women in Sports” and “LGBTQ Inclusion in Sports.”

The LGBTQ Sports Panel will “explore the public’s beliefs about athletes and sports teams that support LGBTQ issues; because on the playing field, people are judged based on their skills, talents, and contributions—not their identities.” The panel will be moderated by Park Cannon and feature WNBA Player Simone Edwards, Kandice Mitchell and Activist Amazin LêThi who will be talking about the representation of Asian LGBTQ People in sports.

In a recent discussion, LêThi shared with us some of her talking points for the panel, including… 

  • The racial disparity in professional sports, especially with a very low representation of Asian athletes in professional sports teams and leagues.
  • The contributing factors that create many barriers for LGBTQ Asian people in feeling comfortable to participate in sports.
  • The combination of Racism, Homophobia/Transphobia and Sexism that Asian LGBTQ people must contend that tend to discourage pursuing sports.
  • The lack of role models for LGBTQ Asian Youth, specifically in sports.
  • Stereotypes against Asian people that inhibit opportunities to pursue sports, including lack of scholarship opportunities, misconceptions of wealth and culture.
  • How to create better representation and increased opportunities for LGBTQ Asian people in sports.
  • How to be a better ally for LGBTQ Asian People, especially within sports.

LêThi is a leader who is working hard to build representation, education and awareness of the LGBTQ Asian Community in sports through Athlete Ally and her foundation The Amazin LêThi Foundation. Coming of the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, with the 2020 Olympics in Japan, the 2022 Winter Olympics in Beijing and the 2022 Gay Games in Hong Kong. LêThi recognizes that the discussion is long overdue and that it is important to bring awareness, education and representation for LGBTQ Asian people within sports, to create opportunities and encourage more LGBTQ Asian people to pursue sports.

The Atlanta Women in Sports Luncheon has partnered with Athlete Ally, 40 Girls and Some Shoes, Atlantic Public School Female Athletic Programs and the Amazin LêThi Foundation which are all organizations that advocate for equality and representation of women and LGBTQ people in sports. Click here for more information and to buy tickets.

By Dirk Smith