With sports and LGBTQ issues becoming politicized more than ever before, where do the interests of LGBTQ audiences and sports fans intersect. When stories involving athletes coming out and competing at the highest levels in amateur and professional sports, what impact does that have on mainstream media coverage of sports events. How do those stories resonate with LGBTQ audiences? And how is that perspective different from how sports are seen through the lens of LGBTQ media?
Moderator: Christina Kahrl
Panelists: Katie Barnes, Israel Gutierrez, Steve Mason, David McFarland, Cyd Zeigler
CHRISTINA KAHRL is a senior editor covering Major League Baseball for ESPN.com, and is a 10-year member of the Baseball Writers Association of America. She is also a cofounder of the Baseball Prospectus (a research think tank), and has served on the boards of Equality Illinois and GLAAD before joining the board of NLGJA.
KATIE BARNES is a sports reporter for espnW and the 2017 winner of the NLGJA Journalist of the Year.
STEVE MASON is an American broadcast personality based in Southern California since 1982. He is co-host with John Ireland of the “Mason and Ireland” weekday show on ESPN Los Angeles 710 KSPN and hosts the pregame show for the stations broadcasts of the University of Southern California Trojans football team.
DAVID MCFARLAND is a social entrepreneur, film & TV producer/writer, and media & entertainment executive who has long worked at the intersection of sport, entertainment, technology and social change. As a social impact consultant to powerhouse brands and advisor to global leaders addressing critical social and public health issues, McFarland has become a well-known and respected voice for LGBTQ Americans with a keen focus on equality and inclusion. He is the founder and chief executive officer of DLM Entertainment Group and is the creator and executive producer of “Alone In The Game” – a critically acclaimed feature documentary film, which world premiered at the 2018 AFI Docs Film Festival and had its network world premiere on AT&T DirecTV’s Audience Network on June 28. McFarland served as the Chair and CEO for the Trevor Project and is credited with helping to lead the political action of the White House and cultural response from American and world leaders by showcasing the public health crisis of suicide and incidences of bullying that affect LGBTQ youth. In addition to his pioneering work in the world of sports and being a former elite athlete, McFarland has worked as an executive at MTV Networks, Comedy Central, Fox Family Worldwide, Lifetime Television Entertainment and Cox Communications.
ISRAEL GUTIERREZ is a sports reporter for ESPN, known nationally for his appearances on ESPN “First Take,” “The Sports Reporters” and “Around the Horn.” He co-hosts the radio show “Izzy and Spain” with espnW’s Sarah Spain.
CYD ZEIGLER is co-founder of Outsports.com and one of the world’s leading experts on LGBTQ issues in sports. He has written about LGBTQ athletes, homophobia and trans inclusion in sports for almost 20 years. He is a former NLGJA award winner.