Diversity, Equity,
Inclusion & Belonging

Special Olympics Louisiana urges and embraces diversity, equity and inclusion in all communities.  Sports are a catalyst for acceptance and change, and we are committed to using our platform to promote unity because we are all better together.

Our Vision is that Diversity, Equity and Inclusion are at the heart of all that we do at Special Olympics Louisiana as we strive to promote unity and create a world where everyone belong.

We value, celebrate and respect all differences, backgrounds and perspectives and understand that greater diversity and inclusion creates a stronger and more innovative organization that delivers better results as we work with the athletes in all communities.

A Message From Our President

Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Belonging are at the heart of our organizational strategy. We are proud of the work that has been done by our athletes, staff and volunteers to expand opportunities for people with intellectual disabilities. We strive to continue this work as we expand our inclusion efforts in the years ahead.”

John Guzzardo, Special Olympics Louisiana President & CEO

What is DEI&B?

Diversity, Equity, Inclusion & Belonging


Diversity is the representation of all our varied identities and differences (race, ethnicity, gender, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, tribe, caste, socio-economic status, thinking and communication styles, etc.), collectively and as individuals.


Equity seeks to ensure fair treatment, equality of opportunity, and fairness in access to information and resources for all.


Inclusion builds a culture of belonging by actively inviting the contribution and participation of all people.


Belonging entails having a voice and the opportunity to participate in and contribute to a community. A community where someone feels safe enough to be their authentic self and build meaningful relationships.

DEI&B Goals

Summary of goals:

  • Offer opportunities for internal DEI conversations and trainings
  • Provide greater language access to athletes and community members
  • Add community representatives to the DEI Committee
  • Build community relationships with nonprofits and vendors to learn more from their expertise and identify ways in which we can better partner with or serve their constituents
  • Regularly communicate progress updates to our community

Goals accomplished so far:

  • Created a Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Committee that meets regularly
  • Emphasized issues of diversity, equity and inclusion throughout our Strategic Plan, as evidenced by DEI goals and strategies amongst each of our key priorities in the strategic plan
  • Updated staff holiday calendar to include a floating holiday, to recognize and honor the diversity of our team and wide range of backgrounds and traditions
  • Employed two Special Olympics Louisiana athletes
  • Paved the way for the appointment of a Special Olympics Louisiana athlete as Unified Chair of the Board of Directors
  • Added a second athlete seat to the Board of Directors and updated board terms to ensure equitability
  • Updated our website and promotional materials to make them more accessible to a wider audience of end users

Special Olympics Louisiana does not and shall not discriminate on the basis of gender, gender expression, religion, race, color, creed, political affiliation, marital status, union preference, disability, medical condition, pregnancy, veteran status, national origin, ancestry, age, sexual orientation, or other unlawful discrimination. These activities include, but are not limited to hiring and termination of staff, selection of volunteers, board members, vendors and provision of services. Special Olympics Louisiana is committed to providing an inclusive and welcoming environment for all members of our staff, athletes, volunteers, subcontractors, vendors and other constituents and persons served.

What is Equity?

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