This week's "Photo of the Week" comes to us from Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton's official photographer Michael Gross and shows Secretary Clinton with ESPN's President John Skipper as they announce a new collaboration between the State Department and espnW -- the Global Sports Mentoring Program -- at the Department of State on June 21, 2012.
Harnessing the power of mentoring, the Department, in collaboration with espnW, will connect international and American women to build capacity and create sustainable sports opportunities for underserved women and girls worldwide. In the fall of 2012, approximately 20 women, ages 25-40, who have been identified as emerging leaders in sports, will travel to the United States where they will be paired with leading American women who work in a sports-related field. Participants may include women who administer or manage sports programs; manage and/or coach sports teams; work in mid-to-upper management roles for corporations with a sports-related focus; work at non-governmental organizations (NGOs); and specialize in sports journalism and mass communication, sports marketing, and sports medicine.
In her remarks, Secretary Clinton said, "We at the State Department believe in the power of sports to bring people together across barriers of all kinds -- national barriers, language, cultural, racial barriers, and increasingly across the divide of gender. Now, we will see this vividly in just a few weeks when the 2012 Olympics begin in London. Whether as competitors, teammates, or simply as fans, people can find common ground in sports, and that can, therefore, be the beginning of developing better understanding and respect and even friendships that extend outside the arena or the playing field.
"In addition to what sports can make happen between people, they can also bring about transformative change within people. Sports can make you stronger, tougher, more confident, more resilient, and those qualities stay with you long after you finish the race or the final buzzer sounds."
The announcement coincides with Saturday's 40th anniversary of Title IX, the landmark legislation which gave many American girls the chance to play sports in school for the first time. Secretary Clinton said, "The Title IX decision was revolutionary, and I think all of us who care about opportunities for girls and women view it as one of the most consequential pieces of legislation for women in our country's history."Related Content: The U.S. Department of State and ESPNW Global Sports Mentoring Program and the U.S. Department of State's Council to Empower Women and Girls Through Sports