Sports Law

Positive Coaching Alliance Founder Wins First ETHOS Award: Tom Farrey of ESPN to MC

Author: Benjamin G. Shatz

The Santa Clara University Institute of Sports Law and Ethics (ISLE), which is chaired by Manatt Sports Law Practice Group chair Ron Katz, will be giving its first ETHOS award for contributions to the ethics of sports to Jim Thompson, the founder and CEO of Positive Coaching Alliance (PCA), whose mission is to transform the culture of youth sports so that all youth athletes have a positive, character-building experience. The Master of Ceremonies at the May 1 dinner will be Tom Farrey, an ESPN journalist and the author of Game On: The All-American Race to Make Champions of Our Children.

ISLE is a joint venture of Santa Clara University's Law School, Athletic Department and Center for Applied Ethics. The ETHOS award is given for a decision, action, or program that has contributed to the ethics of sport, which is defined by ISLE as ". . . adherence to the rules, practices and structures that promote fair opportunity and fair competition for all participants, concern for the safety of all athletes, and a concern for the positive impact sport can have on American life and on the moral formation of all participants." ETHOS is the Greek word for "character."

Founded in 1998 with a grant from Stanford University's Athletic Department, PCA has reached millions of youth athletes through thousands of coaches. PCA's models include The Double-Goal Coach, whose first goal is winning and whose second, more important goal is teaching life lessons through sports; The Second-Goal Parent, who concentrates on life lessons, while letting coaches and athletes focus on competing; and The Triple-Impact Competitor, who strives to impact sport on three levels by improving himself or herself, teammates and the game as a whole.

"We are delighted that Jim Thompson and PCA have won our inaugural award," said Katz, "because he exemplifies ISLE's values. I am also grateful that Manatt has become a Charter Sponsor of ISLE, along with the San Francisco 49ers and the San Jose Sharks."

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