The Athlete Leadership Council (ALC) met in Madison late this month, helping plan the future of Special Olympics Wisconsin programming and athlete offerings. It was the first in-person meeting for the ALC since the pre-pandemic era in 2019.
The ALC is a statewide committee where two nominated and selected athlete leaders per region serve 3-year terms to provide input and leadership to SOWI. The ALC also includes a pair of athlete leaders who also serve on the board of directors and an athlete representative from the statewide LETR Council. The ALC is run by athlete and SOWI Unified Leadership Specialist Lexi Galarowicz.
As a group, the ALC planned upcoming Activation Stations at all 2023 Special Olympics Wisconsin State competitions—which now includes Winter Games, Spring Games, Summer Games, Fall Games, and State Tournaments for Bowling, Golf, and Volleyball. These Activation Stations will keep the ALC connected to our 250+ recently trained Athlete Leaders to ensure they have opportunities to serve in meaningful positions within and outside SOWI.
Additionally, the ALC planned for other 2023 engagements, including a social gathering at Spring Games in Oshkosh and an ALC retreat in northern Wisconsin later in the year.
The ALC also welcomed to the honored guest Beth Alldridge, who began her Special Olympics path in the 1970s as a coach and attended the 1979 International Games in Brockport, N.Y. She moved on to become the CEO of Special Olympics Arizona, eventually working for Special Olympics International as the Director of Organizational Development, among others. Her husband, Dennis, also served as longtime President & CEO of Special Olympics Wisconsin.
Alldridge announced an allocation of $8,000 to advance SOWI athlete and Unified Leadership goals and strategies for Special Olympics Wisconsin.
Although some representatives have served terms spanning pre-COVID pandemic times, many current ALC representatives met in person for the very first time.