Robbie Rogers' courage can inspire us all

Robbie Rogers’ story is powerful on so many different levels. From winning a national soccer championship at the University of Maryland to winning two MLS cups, Robbie is a great athlete – but that is just where his story begins. 

In 2013, Robbie announced his retirement from pro soccer and, in the same message, came out as gay. Five months later, despite fears of not being accepted by his family, his fans and his teammates, Robbie came back from retirement and made history as the first openly gay male athlete on a pro sports team in the U.S. 

“The moment that I found myself and actually was the most proud of myself was my first day back training with the Galaxy. I remember the night before I didn’t really sleep much. I was so scared to be back in the locker room as a player and to be training and what that was going to mean and how guys were going to treat me and if there would be whispers in the locker room and if I would be walking on eggshells. I was really proud of the courage which I actually didn’t think I had. That was probably one of the most courageous moments for me.”

Robbie’s story really strikes a chord. We still have a long way to go in making sport an inclusive place for everyone, but Robbie’s story is a reminder that sport has the power to transcend differences and bring people together. Robbie broke new ground and changed the status quo. It took a tremendous amount of courage, but he proved, in his words, “we're so much stronger than we realize.”

Listen to our full conversation here.

Lauren Grancio