Social Justice

In All, Fairness

Throughout his career, Brand was a vocal advocate for diversity and inclusion. As early as his time as Provost at The Ohio State, he was speaking about the importance of supporting minority students and combating the injustices in our society.

During his tenure at the NCAA, Brand was committed to developing NCAA initiatives to address social justice issues regarding race, gender, class, sexuality, and disability. He sought to restructure the hierarchies of power that prevented true equity within athletics and to expand the opportunities for education and sport participation for underrepresented and minority students.

Brand defended Title IX when it was under attack by President George W. Bush. He vehemently argued against the “dumb jock” myth that pervaded perceptions of African American athletes. And he often spoke out against the low numbers of women and people of color in administrative and coaching positions. In his words, diversity hiring and affirmative action were not only morally right but also the smartest course of action.

In August 2005, Brand created the NCAA’s Office for Diversity and Inclusion, hiring African American scholar Charlotte Westerhaus to serve as Vice President of the office. Together, they developed and implemented programs such as the Diversity Education Program, the Football Coaches Academy, and the Leadership Institute for Ethnic Minority Males and Females.

In 2005, the NCAA Executive Committee took another unprecedented step in the world of sports by refusing to conduct championships at institutions with offensive mascots. As an organization, the NCAA had no official authority to ban such mascots, but their stance was a clear condemnation of racial caricatures. In Brand’s words, “This is not about an effort to be politically correct. It is about doing the right thing.”

Over the years, Brand repeatedly spoke on issues of social justice in sports, doing his part to change our culture for the better. Brand himself admitted that solving these injustice problems was one of the most persistent and frustrating challenges of his tenure: one that still, to this day, reveals an unfortunate resistance to true equity.

Social Justice

“Diversity Hiring Is Right, Smart,” Huffington Post

April 10, 2009

“To Rooney or Not to Rooney,” Huffington Post

July 6, 2009

“Maybe Two Is More Than Twice as Good as One,” Huffington Post

September 16, 2009

ESPN Richard Lapchick Tribute

September 17, 2009

NCAA Tribute at Conseco Fieldhouse, Indianapolis, IN, hosted by Jim Nantz with soprano Sylvia McNair, poet Garrett Hongo, and Indiana rock legend John Mellencamp

October 28, 2009

Essays on “The Legacy of Myles Brand,” NCAA Tribute Book

October 28, 2009

“Myles Brand: In His Own Words,” NCAA Publication of Excerpts from His Speeches

October 28, 2009

“Myles, Looking North-Northwest from the Rincons: To the memory of Myles Brand,” by Garrett Hongo

October 28, 2009

“Myles Brand Honored Posthumously as Visionary for Inclusion,” by Amy Winner Schwarb

August 15, 2018