LOS ANGELES – LA 2024 today celebrated the upcoming 45th anniversary of Title IX, the landmark gender equality legislation widely credited with forging the path for US women to participate and excel in sport. Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti, LA First Lady Amy Elaine Wakeland and LA 2024 Athletes’ Advisory Commission member and Paralympian Allison Compton today joined hundreds of girls and young women for a celebration and multi-sport clinic at the Getty House, the official Mayoral residence, reflecting LA 2024’s commitment to advance the IOC’s Olympic Agenda 2020 Goals of expanding opportunity for women in the Olympic and Paralympic Movements, both on and off the field.
Title IX, also known as the Equal Opportunity in Education Act, stated that “No Person in the United States shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from participation in, or denied the benefits of, or be subject to discrimination under any educational program or activity receiving Federal assistance.” The legislation has dramatically increased opportunities for women to participate and excel in sport since its passage 45 years ago. As a result, in both the 2016 Olympic and Paralympic Games in Rio, US women won more medals than men.
Title IX also helped guide LA 2024’s policies to promote gender equality, and LA 2024’s athlete-centered Games Plan was informed by nationwide consultation meetings with hundreds of female Olympians and Paralympians from different nations, sports and age groups.
LA 2024 Board Member, Athletes’ Advisory Commission Member and Olympic Champion Donna de Varona, who was a leading advocate for Title IX enforcement, said: “Title IX is about more than athletic success and medals; it’s about women’s right to equal treatment, respect, opportunity and aspiration. I am proud to be a part of LA 2024, because we are totally committed to actively promoting gender equality through the unique power of the Olympic and Paralympic Games. LA 2024 is eager to leverage the City of Angels’ ready-made connection with youth audiences to get America’s 50 million girls and young women enthusiastic about and participating in sport and the Olympic and Paralympic Movements.“
Held at the historic Getty House, the event featured LA 2024 leaders speaking to the crowd and then joining them in a series of sports clinics. LA 2024 Athletes’ Advisory Commission member and Paralympian Allison Compton, who helped found Women’s Sitting Volleyball, spoke to the group of young women about the importance of perseverance. Growing up in Southern California, Compton became an expert beach volleyball player, but could not compete on the men’s Paralympic Standing Volleyball team. With the help of USA Volleyball and the USOC, Compton started the first women’s team for the 2004 Paralympic Games in Athens, where she spiked the winning point to earn Team USA its first medal. Team USA has medaled in every Games since.
LA 2024 Athletes’ Advisory Commission member and Paralympian Allison Compton said: “Title IX has been pivotal in empowering women to follow their dreams and succeed on the world’s greatest athletic stage – the Olympic and Paralympic Games. It was an honor to share my story with these young women and help them understand Title IX’s impact. I am proud to be a part of LA 2024 because I know how seriously the bid takes the advancement of women and Olympic and Paralympic-based value education and we saw that in action today.”
Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti said: “Girls deserve every opportunity to thrive in their own communities. And we know that girls who play sports are more likely to excel in school and other areas of their lives. That is why Amy and I are so committed to giving women and girls every possible chance to lead and to shine. Title IX has enabled countless young athletes to reach for their dreams, and inspire all of us. We couldn’t be prouder to celebrate this groundbreaking legislation today.”
LA 2024’s executive team includes accomplished leaders in the international Women in Sport movement, including American IOC Executive Board Member and LA 2024 Senior Advisor for Legacy Anita DeFrantz, American IOC Member and LA 2024 Chief Strategy Officer Angela Ruggiero, LA 2024 Vice Chair and Director for Athlete Relations Janet Evans, LA 2024 Vice Chair and Director of Paralympic Engagement Candace Cable, Executive Director for Sustainability and Legacy Brence Culp, Executive Director for Sport Leader Relations Marla Messing, Director of Administrative Operations Carla Garcia and Deputy General Counsel Tanja Olano.