Sometimes the best stories are true, and that’s what GForce’s Invisible Athlete Forum speakers provide – true stories of determination, courage, humor, sometimes heartbreak, and always success. Our LGBT athletes and allies are selected for their levels of accomplishment in their given sport, for their ability to fashion successful careers in spite of their own fears and doubts and for their potential as role models to audiences of any sexual orientation. And, they’re selected for the abilities to open up to audiences.
The Invisible Athlete Forums use openly gay athletes and their allies to talk with audiences of all ages about what’s at the heart of a good athlete and competitor, straight or gay. Forum speakers are former high school and college athletes. Some are team captains and all-Americans. Some are position players, and the backbones of their teams. They all are people used to facing adversity and overcoming their own secrets. Invisible Athlete Forums tell the stories of these gay athletes, their teams, their coaches and their families and how being gay changed perceptions, attitude and athletic performance.
Below is a list of our current speakers:
Patrick Burke is a 2006 graduate of the University of Notre Dame and is currently in his fifth year as a scout for the Philadelphia Flyers. Burke’s hockey lineage includes his father, Toronto Maple Leafs GM Brian Burke, and his late younger brother, Brendan, who was an openly gay member of the Miami University hockey team. Patrick attends New England Law in Boston. Patrick has been nationally recognized for his work as a straight ally to the gay community.
David Farber is the former captain and leading goal scorer of the University of Pennsylvania hockey team. He became one of the first openly gay players in college athletics and speaks nationally about his experiences as a gay athlete. He lives in New York City where he works for the U.S. Department of Justice.
Andrew Goldstein is a former Dartmouth College All-American lacrosse player — and the first goalie in nearly thirty years to score a goal during the NCAA tournament. Openly gay during college, he became the first openly gay male professional sports athlete when Major League Lacrosse’s Long Island Lizards drafted him. Goldstein has been named to Out Magazine’s Out 100 and has received a GLAAD media award. Goldstein studied biochemistry and molecular biology at Dartmouth and recently completed a PhD at UCLA.
Andrew McIntosh received nationwide attention after letting his SUNY-Oneonta lacrosse teammates know he is gay. The former team captain was named one of 2010’s “Out 100” by Out Magazine for his groundbreaking role in college athletics. McIntosh is a teacher, coach and speaker living in Fresno, California. He is currently completing a Master’s Degree in counseling at Fresno State.
Brandy Ranshaw is a former member of the US Olympic Ski Team and women’s pro circuit qualifier. Brandy lives in Denver and is a marketing sales and public relations consultant.