A yearlong celebration of the 50th anniversary of Title IX culminated with a three-day celebratory event on Illinois State University’s campus, June 24-26.
President Terri Goss Kinzy, the keynote speaker for the Title IX Celebration Banquet held in the Brown Ballroom of the Bone Student Center Saturday, June 25, reminded everyone that the purpose of the weekend’s events was to honor those who fought the battle for gender equity, especially those in the audience.
“We’ve celebrated amazing progress that’s been made and the doors that have been opened not just in athletics but in our educational system here in the United States,” Kinzy said. “And, what it’s meant for so many women in their careers that Title IX has done so much to move our society forward for which we’re all incredibly grateful.”
“But last, let’s remember we need you to commit to embracing the spirit of gender equity, and quite frankly, all equity in all aspects of our lives. Because remember, we’re not done yet, and we need you all.”
The program included a welcome from Director of Athletics Kyle Brennan along with a ‘Reclaiming the Title IX Narrative’ segment featuring Dr. Jill Hutchison, M.S. ’69 and Dr. Linda Herman, M.S. ’72, Ed.D. ’83.
“Those 37 words (the total number of words that amended the Higher Education Act and became Title IX) are powerful, they were transformational,” Herman said. “They became federal legislation that’s impacted every one of us in this room.”
Hutchison said the landmark legislation allowed her generation a means to remind future generations to be vigilant in their support of both Title IX and women’s athletics.
“We can really make a difference and leave a lasting legacy,” she said.
More than a dozen former and current student-athletes and coaches shared their testimonials and student-athlete experiences during Saturday evening’s program. The weekend-long celebration also included a 5K run/walk, a leadership seminar, a campus tour, and ‘team time’ featuring cornhole games and music.