118 episodes

With two new episodes each month, Champions of Change: The RISE Podcast gives athletes and leaders in sports a platform to tell their stories and share their perspectives on issues of race, social justice and diversity, equity & inclusion in sports. Hosted by Ian Cutler, our podcast features interviews on how athletes are making a difference in their communities, and the power of sports to bring people together, improve race relations and advance racial equity and social justice.

Champions of Change: The RISE Podcast Champions of Change: The RISE Podcast

    • Sports
    • 5.0 • 14 Ratings

With two new episodes each month, Champions of Change: The RISE Podcast gives athletes and leaders in sports a platform to tell their stories and share their perspectives on issues of race, social justice and diversity, equity & inclusion in sports. Hosted by Ian Cutler, our podcast features interviews on how athletes are making a difference in their communities, and the power of sports to bring people together, improve race relations and advance racial equity and social justice.

    Title IX at 50: Sarah Axelson, Women's Sports Foundation

    Title IX at 50: Sarah Axelson, Women's Sports Foundation

    Commemorating the 50th anniversary of the passage of Title IX, we speak with Sarah Axelson, Vice President of Advocacy at the Women’s Sports Foundation. Sarah joins RISE's Ian Cutler and Natalia Chino to discuss the impact of Title IX and the significance of this anniversary, assessing the landscape of women’s sports today and the progress made in respect to equality and inclusivity. She also discusses the additional barriers faced by girls and women of color and the deeper disparities that exist for them in comparison to white women and men in sports and beyond. Finally, Sarah talks about the efforts of the Women’s Sports Foundation, how they are celebrating the 50th anniversary of Title IX and the work that still needs to be done to achieve true equity and inclusion in sports.

    • 32 min
    How We Talk, Teach and Tackle Racism in College Athletics - Maryland Sports Business Conference

    How We Talk, Teach and Tackle Racism in College Athletics - Maryland Sports Business Conference

    As we approach Juneteenth, the celebration of the end of slavery in this country, we share this RISE critical Conversation from the recently held University of Maryland Sports Business Conference. With lawmakers across the country seeking to restrict the way issues of race, diversity and inclusion are discussed and taught in schools and places of work, this conversation addresses how we talk, teach and tackle racism in the collegiate space, particularly in athletics. With such legislative efforts rising in various states, Juneteenth serves as a reminder for the need to acknowledge and learn from our history and continue to push in the modern day fight for racial and social justice. In this conversation, we tackle these issues head-on, addressing athlete activism, amateurism and racial equity in college sports and the importance of engaging in honest conversations around racism and inclusivity. Moderated by University of Maryland Assistant Athletic Director of Student-Athlete Development, Resa Lovelace, the conversation features RISE CEO Diahann Billings-Burford; Kevin Blackistone, Professor of the Practice at the Phillip Merrill College of Journalism, Washington Post columnist and ESPN Around The Horn panelist; Maryland Women’s Volleyball Player Rainelle Jones; and Dr. Ronald Mower, Lecturer Kinesiology, Maryland School of Public Health.

    • 47 min
    Denver Broncos Safety Justin Simmons and Boys & Girls Clubs of Metro Denver

    Denver Broncos Safety Justin Simmons and Boys & Girls Clubs of Metro Denver

    During the height of the COVID pandemic in 2020, Denver Broncos all-pro safety Justin Simmons began joining weekly virtual sessions of a RISE multi-week leadership program with youth from the Boys & Girls Clubs of Metro Denver. The program provided a safe space for teens to learn about diversity and inclusion related topics, and discuss what it means to be a champion of change for addressing racism and injustice in their communities. The impact of those sessions resonate today.

    Two teens from that program, Nashara and Ray Ray, have since established themselves as leaders within their community. Mentored by Simmons through the RISE program and other engagements at the Denver Broncos Boys & Girls Club, they’ve organized two Marches for Peace to remember those lost to violence and work towards a more equitable and safe future. They and Simmons are also back participating in this year’s in-person RISE leadership program for youth at the BGCMD, engaging a new group of students from the Broncos Club and the Suncor Boys & Girls Club on critical topics of race, identity and community building. That program concludes on May 25, so in this conversation, we speak with Justin, Nashara, Ray Ray and Angel, another student from this year’s program, to discuss the impact of these conversations and how to create more inclusive and equitable communities.

    • 23 min
    Diversity & Inclusion in College Sailing with ICSA TIDE

    Diversity & Inclusion in College Sailing with ICSA TIDE

    The Intercollegiate Sailing Association Inclusivity, Diversity, and Equity Task Force - otherwise known as ICSA TIDE - is dedicated to fostering a diverse and inclusive sailing community. Four of its student-athlete leaders – Lily Allen, University of Michigan; Preston Anderson, Bowdoin College; Michelle Lahrkamp, Stanford University; and Emi Ruth, Brown University – join us to discuss the experiences of women and athletes of color in this majority-white sport, the barriers they need to break to overcome the sport's perception of privilege and exclusivity and how they and TIDE are seeking to make the sport more inclusive at all levels.

    • 53 min
    Celebrating Jackie Robinson Day with Nichol Whiteman, LA Dodgers Foundation CEO

    Celebrating Jackie Robinson Day with Nichol Whiteman, LA Dodgers Foundation CEO

    When Jackie Robinson broke the MLB color barrier on April 15, 1947, it was as a seminal moment in the fight for racial justice that changed our country forever. But 75 years later, we must ask if we have made enough progress since. What can we learn from Robinson’s life and legacy to continue that fight both within sport and in society? As we celebrate Jackie Robinson Day and the 75th anniversary of his groundbreaking achievements, we speak with Nichol Whiteman, the CEO of the Los Angeles Dodgers Foundation. Nichol shares her personal connection to Robinson and his family and tells us how the Dodgers Foundation honors his memory through its programs that empower youth, address social injustice and uplift underserved and underprivileged communities. We also discuss what it means to be a pioneer, asking Nichol how she has handled being the only woman or the only person of a color in a given professional space, and ask what she hopes others can learn from Jackie Robinson about the importance of representation and valuing diversity and inclusion.

    • 26 min
    Inclusive Leadership and College Athletics

    Inclusive Leadership and College Athletics

    In the height of March Madness, RISE’s Dr. Andrew Mac Intosh leads this conversation with Omar Brown (BIG TEN, Senior Vice President, People & Culture Officer), Felicia Martin (NCAA Senior Vice President of Inclusion, Education, and Community Engagement) and Bill Shelton (Group 1001 Chief Marketing Officer), as they discuss addressing challenges of racism, diversity and inclusion in the workplace, and ways to create more inclusive cultures within college athletics and beyond.

    This RISE Critical Conversation was recorded in front of a live audience of college administrators and corporate sponsors at the 2022 BIG TEN Basketball Tournament in Indianapolis, and followed a workshop RISE led for that group focused on inclusive leadership. The program was organized by the Indiana Sports Corp.

    • 32 min

Customer Reviews

5.0 out of 5
14 Ratings

14 Ratings

Sandra Cross ,

Leading Inclusively

Features timely, contemporary and insightful content from inclusive leaders.

Harold7890 ,

Superb podcast!

I recently came across the Champions of Change podcast and I immediately got hooked. Ian provides unique insight on the industry and does an incredible job with his guests to communicate complex ideas about sports, equality, race and social justice. It is a truly one of a kind podcast that expertly bridges the worlds of sports and society. Thank you RISE!!!!

emcc802 ,

Excellent, interesting, timely!

I just discovered the RISE Podcast and have been consistently impressed by it. It offeres a rare chance to hear the athlete's take - in their own words- of what's happening in the world. Especially given the recent controversy in the NFL, hearing athletes address the interesection of sports and social issues feels particularly relevant.

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