Sportswriters and Sportscasters of the LGBTQ Community
Sportswriters and sportscasters provide insightful commentary to the world of sports. They can provide live running commentary, play-by-play action, post-game assessments, and critiques of sports and their participants.
Sports themselves tend to be professions that have historically been intolerant of sexual diversity. Only recently have several sports adopted diversity policies which encourage LGBTQ players to self-identify. Given this, it is important to have commentators and analysts who are members of the LGBTQ community. Some in the profession are gay and out, while it is reported that many remain in the closet.
Many sportscasters and sportswriters are retired athletes themselves, such as Canada's Mark Tewksbury providing commentary on swimming for the CBC, or the UK's Gareth Thomas on rugby. The majority tend to be gay males. However, there is a surprising number of transgender individuals in the profession, including the UK's Nicky Bandini of the Guardian newspaper and Americans Christina Kahrl of ESPN and Mike Penner of the Las Angeles Times.
A sports media LGBTQ network would be helpful to the profession and its members and the wider sports profession. A collective voice can add weight and credibility to the LGBTQ community. Issues of sexual diversity are becoming more prominent in sports, and it helps to have a strong coalition of commentators and critics of sports to interpret this trend and provide insight. It would also be a helpful resource for those in the industry who are looking to come out and be visible. To this end, the organization Sports Media LGBT+ was founded by Great Britain's Jon Holmes.
A 2019 study of LGBTQ sports media personalities (see Further Research below) found that, of all participants in the study who were out to colleagues, almost all were unconditionally accepted when doing so. This shows the power of acceptance of sexual diversity within the sports profession and is encouraging for a trend to more out sportswriters and sportscasters.
- Rob Astbury, Nine Network/Ten Network
- Anne Will, ARD
- John Amaechi
- Nicky Bandini, The Guardian/ESPN/Talksport
- Jon Holmes, Sky Sports Digital
- Alex Kay-Jelski, The Athletic/The Times/Daily Mail
- Mark McAdam, Sky Sports
- Gareth Thomas, BBC
- Brian Boitano
- Steve Buckley, The Athletic/Boston Herald
- Jim Buzinski, Outsports
- Bo Churney, ESPN/Turner Sports
- Chuck Culpepper, Sports on Earth/Los Angeles Times/Newsday
- LZ Granderson, Los Angeles Times/CNN/ESPN
- Israel Gutierrez, ESPN
- Erik Hall, Outsports
- Chris Hine, Chicago Tribune
- Christina Kahrl, ESPN/baseballprospectus.com
- Bill Konigsberg, Associated Press
- Stefanie Loh, Seattle Times/San Diego Union-Tribune
- Mark Lund, International Figure Skating Magazine
- Jared Max, ESPN radio
- Nick McCarvel, freelance/USA Today
- Mike Penner, Los Angeles Times
- Kevin Ramsell, Fastrax Magazine/Hawkeye Racing News/Circle Track/Speedway Illustrated/Late Model Racer/Speed Sport News
- Alex Reimer, Outsports/Boston Herald/Forbes
- Robin Roberts, ESPN
- Gail Shister, Philadelphia Inquirer
- Matt Tracy
- Cyd Zeigler, Outsports/Genre/New York Blade
- LGBTQ Sports Management
- LGBTQ Professional and Amateur Sports Coaches
- LGBTQ Sports Referees and Umpires
- LGBTQ Magazine Editors