Powerfully Choosing Everyone

In the corporate space, there has been a focus around diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging. We see companies that embrace it with intentionality and others that are less than ideal with their intentions.  

In the sporting world, there is beautiful noise that is bringing about awareness and amplification that hasn’t necessarily been there historically.  If you have read my book, you know that the Bleymaier family was born into sports, raised in sports, has been a trailblazer in sports, and is continuing to create history in the area of sports.  

Growing up in the Nashville area, I remember when the National Hockey League established the Nashville Predators back in 1997.  We attended a couple of games, armed with training materials on the rules of the game, but it wasn’t until I met my now husband that my love for hockey was ignited.  

The Nashville Predators are doing an exceptional job of highlighting diversity, equity, and inclusion. One of my favorite times of the 41 home game season is when Nashville Predators host their annual Hockey Is For Everyone Night, along with having dedicated games to honor Black History Month, Asian & Pacific Islander Heritage, The LGBTQIA+ community, women, and others.

Four years ago, they established GUIDER which stands for growth, understanding, inclusion, diversity, equality, and representation.  This impactful program celebrates the diverse community within Nashville and brings us together to connect, build, and celebrate.  I look forward with anticipation to see the specifically curated hockey jerseys that are designed to pay homage to that night that players wear upon arriving at the arena.  

You know we wouldn’t be in Nashville if we didn’t have live music at all our sporting events, including at our hockey games.  We have a band stage that provides celebrity artists, new artists, and even student artists the opportunity to perform in front of 17,000 cheering hockey fans.  Opportunities like this speak to the importance of honoring and respecting all those in our diverse community, no matter where they are in their musical careers, giving them a space to dream big and grow.  We can learn something from everyone, from those who are in elementary school to those who have lived through the history books, those who have dreams of being on the big stage, and those who frequently grace our airwaves.

Being intentional with inclusivity, powerfully choosing everyone no matter our age or differences, and remembering to be kind, respectful, and loving is something we need to demonstrate daily to ourselves, our community, to our tiny humans, and to the world.