by Jack Gierhart, Chief Executive Officer, US Sailing
A core tenet of US Sailing’s mission is encouraging participation and engagement in the sport of sailing. Central to this is inviting sailors of all backgrounds, ethnicities, and orientations to join, flourish and grow within the sailing community. Setting an inclusive course for the growth of our sport takes a dedicated and purposeful approach, requiring thoughtfulness to ensure we cultivate a diverse environment in which anyone can access, join, and enjoy sailing.
Although we have taken some initial steps toward change, we are humbled by recent listening and learning, and understand we need to take positive action to address the barriers and disparities that exist. The discussions currently occurring within the sailing community to collectively pursue diversity, equity, and inclusion are encouraging.
As an organization, we want to expand and better convey a supportive and inclusive community. It is imperative to connect sailors from all backgrounds and collaborate with sailing organizations and diverse communities across the country. This organization- and industry-wide transformation is in the early stages, and will require hard work, self-evaluation, and commitment.
We are fortunate to have experienced and passionate community leaders working with us side-by-side to amplify new voices, perspectives, and guidance. We encourage others to reach out, join, engage, listen, learn, and lead. In order to make meaningful progress, US Sailing is open to ideas, guidance and critique that improve and expand our efforts.
Growing the sport and evolving the face of sailing is a long-term, ongoing commitment that must be integral to our community. Working together can create momentum within both US Sailing and the broader sailing community that leads to a more welcoming environment across the sport.
Here are several actions that US Sailing is taking to help drive effective and positive change: click here.
This content was originally published here.