The espnW: Women + Sports Summit, presented by Toyota, Celebrates 10th Anniversary with Expansive Speaker Lineup, Featuring Good Morning America’s Robin Roberts and GRAMMY Award winner Ella Mai
The 10th annual espnW: Women + Sports Summit presented by Toyota will again showcase key figures in sports, business and entertainment, and will be headlined by Good Morning America’s Robin Roberts, GRAMMY Award winner Ella Mai, Wasserman CEO Casey Wasserman, WWE superstar Becky Lynch, Olympic champions Kendall Coyne Schofield, Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce, Michelle Carter, trailblazer and Olympic medalist Ibtihaj Muhammad, 2018 WNBA Rookie of the Year A’ja Wilson and WNBA champion and MVP Nneka Ogwumike.
The sold-out gathering will take place October 21-23 at The Resort at Pelican Hill, in Newport Beach, Calif. The Summit serves up keynotes, conversations, panels, W Power Talks, and interactive breakout sessions, all focused on the most timely issues that lie at the intersection of women, sports and culture.
The Summit kicks off with the annual Women in Leadership panel hosted by espnW columnist and ESPN commentator Sarah Spain, followed by the espnW World Class Athlete Panel, hosted by SportsCenter anchor and Summit emcee Sage Steele, featuring Lynch, Fraser-Pryce and two-time CrossFit champion and Fittest Woman on Earth Katrin Davidsdottir. Steele will also sit down for a one-on-one conversation with ESPN commentator, Olympic gold medalist and Sunday Night Baseball analyst Jessica Mendoza.
Monday evening, Ella Mai will perform live with an intimate acoustic set after sitting down for a wide-ranging interview with SportsCenter’s Cari Champion. Mai is a GRAMMY Award winner for Best R&B Song “Boo’d Up” and won three Billboard Music Awards in 2019, including Top R&B Artist.
On Tuesday, espnW’s hit podcast, “Laughter Permitted with Julie Foudy,” will feature espnW columnist and ESPN soccer commentator Julie Foudy speaking with UCLA gymnastics sensation Katelyn Ohashi and her former coach, Valerie Kondos Field.
Also on Tuesday, The Summit will spotlight critical conversations focusing on equal pay in sports and whether collegiate athletes should be paid. ESPN’s Sarah Spain will debate with ESPN college basketball commentator and lawyer Jay Bilas in “The Value of College Athletes. To Pay or Not to Pay,” while Foudy will return Tuesday for “The Value of Professional Female Athletes. Equal Play, Equal Pay,” featuring Ogwumike, Coyne Schofield and Lis Moss of CAA Sports, as well as John Langel, who helped both U.S. Soccer and the U.S. women’s hockey team make advances in pay equity.
Casey Wasserman, Chairman and CEO of Wasserman, will join Steele for an espnW Keynote Interview Tuesday. Wasserman’s agency recently launched The Collective, which is a new division for women in sports and entertainment. The Collective aims to raise the visibility of women in sports, entertainment, and culture by delivering unique strategy, insights, and ideas for talent, brands, and properties focused on empowering and speaking to women. In addition, the Wasserman Foundation recently committed $1 million to fund charitable programs encouraging the growth and development of women in sports and entertainment.
ESPN President Jimmy Pitaro and espnW founder and ESPN senior vice president of marketing Laura Gentile will sit down with Foudy on Tuesday evening, followed by espnW’s “Be Honest with Cari Champion” featuring Good Morning America’s Robin Roberts.
On the final day of the event, College GameDay’s Maria Taylor, also a reporter on ESPN’s college football and basketball coverage, will join WNBA All-Star A’ja Wilson and Olympic standouts Michelle Carter and Ibtihaj Muhammad for “Unapologetic: The Undefeated Panel on the Black Female Athlete.”
Other speakers and panels include:
- A conversation with Toyota athletes Hailie Deegan and Brittney Zamora, hosted by Sarah Spain
- “Voices of the Future” – featuring Azzi Fudd (basketball), Jordyn Barratt (skateboarding) and Bubba Nickles (softball), hosted by Julie Foudy
- “W Power Talks with Katie Nolan” – featuring The LA84 Foundation’s Renata Simril and Cindy Whitehead, founder of Girl is NOT a 4 Letter Word
Also joining the espnW: Women + Sports Summit is Alison Overholt, Vice President, Editorial Director and Executive Producer, ESPN.
The espnW: Women + Sports Summit is the only event of its kind in the industry. Through structured and thoughtful conversation, the event pushes the boundaries on topics surrounding women and women in sports, and has offered perspective from groundbreaking people such as: Los Angeles Lakers owner and president Jeanie Buss, WWE chief brand officer Stephanie McMahon, tennis legend and civil rights activist Billie Jean King, award-winning musicians Sheryl Crow and Andra Day, Under Armour CEO Kevin Plank, Olympic gymnast Aly Raisman, journalist and philanthropist Maria Shriver, Ambassador Madeline Verveer, soccer stars Mia Hamm, Carli Lloyd, Abby Wambach and Alex Morgan, and more.
Interviews, photos and additional content will be posted to espnW.com throughout the Summit. In addition, this year’s experience will be livestreamed from start to finish on espnW.com and via the ESPN App. For more information about The espnW: Women + Sports Summit and to see the complete agenda, please visit espnWsummit.com or follow on Twitter with @espnW and #espnWsummit.
espnW is a global multiplatform brand dedicated to engaging and inspiring women through sports. espnW offers total access to female athletes and the sports they play, takes fans inside the biggest events, and captures the biggest trends in sports life/style. espnW also provides a unique point of view on the sports stories that matter most to women and highlights the crossroads of sports and culture. Founded in July 2010, espnW’s content and voices live across digital, television, radio, films, events, educational platforms and social media.