Doug Williams Center for the Study of Race & Politics in Sports

GRAMBLING, La. — Grambling State University has named Brandon A. Logan as Executive Director for the Doug Williams Center for the Study of Race & Politics in Sports. Members of the inaugural Advisory Board have also been named. The Center, established in August, will be supported by the National Football League (NFL) Campus Connection program and other public and private donors.

Brandon Logan
Photo: Grambling State University

“Sport is both a microcosm and is potentially transformative of the racial issues confronting society,” says Logan. “Considering this complexity, the Doug Williams Center for the Study of Race & Politics in Sports will critically analyze the racial politics of athletics and offer thoughtful solutions to level the playing field. My goal is to develop an inclusive learning environment that equips a multi-generation of scholars and decision makers with valuable competitive intelligence that improves organizational structure and culture. I am humbled and honored to lead an initiative that bears the name of my former coach and American trailblazer, Doug Williams. ‘World-class’ and ’excellence’ have been synonymous with the history of Grambling State University and its athletic program. The Center will embody these qualities in the continuation of this institution’s legacy.”

“When Brandon first walked on the football field, I knew he was a leader who could bring individuals together,” says Doug Williams. “From academic leaders, athletes, politicians, social activists, students, and more, I couldn’t think of a better person to take the lead on the initiative.” The Center is named after Williams, a National Football League Executive and Grambling State alumnus; in 1988, Williams was the first Black quarterback to win a Super Bowl.

“Throughout his time as a student and in his personal career, Brandon has shown a unique ability to connect the dots,” adds Connie Walton, Provost and Vice President of Academic Affairs. “We look forward to him engaging our faculty in sports administration, sports marketing, business, history, and other disciplines in the Center’s initiatives.”

The Doug Williams Center’s newly named Board members represent some of the best minds in sports and education. They are well-positioned to guide the Center as it tackles challenges and offers solutions to some of today’s most relevant issues. This esteemed group includes the individuals listed below. Other Board members are expected to be added to the lineup.

  • J. Ofori Agboka, Vice President, Human Resources Global Customer Fulfillment, Amazon
  • Christine Brennan, USA Today Sports Columnist, Television Commentator, Author
  • Joe Burrow, NFL Quarterback, Cincinnati Bengals
  • Mark Davis, Owner, Las Vegas Raiders
  • Matthew Guidry, PhD., Former Deputy Executive Director, The President’s Council on Physical Fitness and Sports
  • James “Shack” Harris, Former NFL Quarterback, Former NFL Executive, Co-founder, Black college Football Hall of Fame
  • Dr. Jim Henderson, University of Louisiana System President
  • E. Newton Jackson, Jr., Ph.D., University of North Florida
  • Earvin “Magic” Johnson, Chairman and CEO, Magic Johnson Enterprises
  • Bob Kendrick, President, Negro Leagues Baseball Museum
  • Dr. Richard Lapchick, Founder/Director, The Institute for Diversity and Ethics in Sport, ESPN Columnist
  • Cynthia Marshall, CEO, Dallas Mavericks
  • Dr. Charles McClelland, Commissioner, Southwestern Athletic Conference (SWAC)
  • Jacqie McWilliams, Commissioner, Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association (CIAA)
  • Gregory Moore, Esq., Commissioner, Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (SIAC)
  • Dr. Charlie Nelms, Chancellor Emeritus, North Carolina Central University
  • Benjamin Peavy, Managing Director, Accenture Federal Services
  • Shannon Sharpe, Co-Host, Skip and Shannon: Undisputed, Pro Football Hall of Famer
  • Dr. Dennis E. Thomas, Commissioner, Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference (MEAC)
  • Dr. Raunda Williams, Special Advisor

“The Doug Williams Center for the Study of Race & Politics in Sports will add great value to our schools, communities and country,” says Board member, Dr. Raunda Williams. “To have a place where different entities can come together to discuss, analyze and create a culture for positive change is much needed anytime, but especially in a time of unrest. Doug and I are so humbled and grateful to be able to work with such a distinguished, accomplished and forward-thinking group of individuals assembled on this advisory board.”

An endowment supporting The Center has been established by The Grambling University Foundation with Argent Trust Company. To make a tax-deductible donation to the endowment, click “CONTRIBUTE” at https://raceandpoliticsinsports.com/. Options are available for one-time gifts as well as ongoing pledges. To contribute marketable securities or include the Doug Williams Center in your estate plans, please contact the Foundation at (318) 274-2217.

To learn more about the Doug Williams Center for the Study of Race & Politics in Sports or to Join The Huddle and get involved, please visit https://raceandpoliticsinsports.com/ or email raceandpoliticsinsports@gram.edu.

About the Doug Williams Center for the Study of Race & Politics in Sports

The Doug Williams Center for the Study of Race and Politics in Sports will engage domestic and global conversations on race and politics in sports aimed at helping to identify, analyze, and develop feasible solutions. The Center will leverage the expertise of an advisory board that will include academic leaders, athletes, politicians, and activists to:

  • examine the historical role of sports and politics in addressing racial inequality and disadvantage in the domestic and global contexts;
  • contribute to national discussions related to race, politics, and diversity in sports;
  • promote critical, interdisciplinary, and innovative research and approaches to understanding race and discrimination;
  • serve as a think tank to generate insights, identify trends and solutions necessary to achieve positive and sustainable change on race issues;
  • collaborate with the NCAA and professional sports leagues to address issues of racial barriers, diversity, and access in athletics;
  • and produce tangible products promoting and addressing the challenging issues of yesterday, today, and tomorrow.

Courtesy: Grambling State University



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