Athlete Input Council and Global Messengers.
Through sport, Special Olympics Wyoming empowers people with intellectual disabilities to achieve unimaginable joy, acceptance and success. As their lives begin to open up, athletes are seeking new challenges, and new ways to utilize their experience and the lessons they’ve learned.
Special Olympics Athlete Leadership Programs allow athletes to explore opportunities for greater participation in our movement beyond sports training and competition: as coaches, officials, team captains, spokespeople, committee and Board members.
These leadership roles give maturing athletes a voice in shaping the Special Olympics Wyoming movement, and a chance to spread the word about the impact Special Olympics can have on individuals and families. Athlete Leadership Programs also provide a way for athletes to showcase talents and interests that may have gone unnoticed.
Like the Global Messenger program that focuses on public speaking. Many athletes choose to undergo training to learn presentation skills so they can help carry the message of Special Olympics, and the courage and dignity of their fellow athletes, to the general public.
Other athletes have an interest in discussing programming and policy. Athletes who serve on Special Olympics Boards of Directors help the movement set priorities based on what athletes want. Athletes share their perspectives on how well Games are run, and their wisdom about how to spend Special Olympics resources.
Athletes and mentors can learn what it takes to be an athlete leader at the annual Leadership Conference (usually held in the fall). Working with a mentor, athletes will explore opportunities within Special Olympics beyond sports.
Be a Part of the Vision
Initiatives like these are not token positions; they are an integral part of the Special Olympics Wyoming organization. Athlete leaders help Special Olympics leaders stay in touch with athletes’ interests, so that we can ensure that our programs remain vital and attractive to the people we are trying to serve. At the same time, Athlete Leadership Programs offer opportunities for athletes to pursue specialized training that can help them develop in new areas of their lives.
Through involvement with Athlete Leadership Programs, athletes can learn how to speak persuasively; interview with the media; mentor and speak up for other athletes; discuss their opinions on policy and governance; analyze financial reports; and research and prepare for fundraising events, to name just a few.
Help support more athletes, and give a voice to more leaders.
Contact Jennifer Haines to learn more.
Athlete Input Council
This council is a forum for athletes to report to other athletes and Program leaders what is happening in their areas, voice their opinions about important issues, and gain leadership training and experience.
The Wyoming Athlete Input Council:
Area I - Lewis Fancher
Area II – Brendan Burke
Area III - Shae’lee Dial, Chris Gallus
Area IV - James Grabrick, Phil Grabrick (board liason)
Area V - Molly Blomstrom, Carolyn Griffith (Unified Partner)
Staff Contact – Laura Kelly
Global Messengers are Special Olympics athletes who help spread the message and vision of the movement as well as the benefits they have gained by participating in Special Olympics.
As leaders and message-bearers of the movement, Global Messengers communicate the powerful declarations of hope, acceptance, dignity and courage of Special Olympics athletes around the world. Athletes can effectively relate the impact that the movement has had on their lives and the lives of their families.
Athletes who have gone through Global Messenger training act as spokespeople for Special Olympics Programs around the world.