Sporting Equals LeaderBoard Academy

A message from Sporting Equals about the importance of equality of opportunity at every level and how they support BAME communities to access key-decision making roles to deliver social cohesion.


At Sporting Equals we prioritise equality for all above anything else, our main aim is to work to create equality of opportunity throughout the sport sector in Britain. When we think of the sport sector often, we assume this largely means athletes but there is much more to the sector than just that. We want equality, diversity and representation at every level from athletes right up to the boardroom as we feel this is the best way to deliver a socially inclusive and cohesive sector.

Social integration and cohesion is only possible through empathy and understanding of all members of society, there is still sadly a disconnect with both representation and understanding of the BAME community here in Britain. This is why we established the LeaderBoard Academy, the more BAME individuals we can skill to go out into the sector to educate and exercise this empathy at decision-making levels the more cohesive and integrated our sector and wider society will become.  

The LeaderBoard Academy is a programme which aids in equipping and skilling diverse individuals with the knowledge and connections to be able to access board-level roles. With three modules held at Leicester University spread across a few days we touch on many subjects inviting experts to attend and host seminars for our undergraduates. The course not only equips the undergraduates with leadership skills but also a thorough background on social and racial context in order to create candidates for boards who will understand the work needed to be undertaken in order to achieve social cohesion.

Over one-third of LeaderBoard graduates found board roles within six months of graduating from the programme and we have high hopes for our second cohort who recently graduated at our British Ethnic Diversity Sports Awards in March 2020 at the London Hilton Park Lane Hotel.  We feel that is our modules equip our graduates with an understanding of the current issues around community cohesion, particularly in the sport sector and we equip them with vital skills to directly resolve the issues at hand. Another reason why we have seen such fantastic results from our graduates with regards to accessing and thriving in their board roles. We are now open for applications for LeaderBoard Academy’s third cohort.

What we want in our applicants is a passion to contribute to the same aims we at Sporting Equals have. This means being enthusiastic about being the change and delivering racial equality in sport and wider society. If you are passionate about equality and are looking for ways of how to deliver impact with your unique perspective as a member of the BAME community this could be the opportunity you have been searching for. 

The LeaderBoard Academy is not only a chance to learn skills for board-level roles we also offer a unique opportunity to build relationships in the sport sector and network. We work closely with our applicants to ensure they feel supported from the beginning of the course right to applying for board vacancies. We pride ourselves on creating an inclusive and supportive environment to ensure everyone is able to engage and thrive. One graduate of the programme commented: 

A ginormous thank you to you all for facilitating the LeaderBoard Academy earlier this week. Everyone on the course thoroughly enjoyed the experience and we’re collectively excited about re-joining in January. Thank you also for taking my multiple sclerosis (MS) disability into consideration and the venue, hotel, food and overnight stay was brilliant. This made it more accessible for me and I was able to engage fully in the course (without any MS relapses) like everyone else.” 

We truly believe in the saying nobody wins unless we all win and that is the driving force behind our programme. The only way true cohesion and social change is possible is through actively seeking opportunities to become that change. With the support of the LeaderBoard Academy we have helped BAME individuals reach that key decision-making level in the sport sector and will continue to do so. We are now accepting applications for our third cohort of LeaderBoard applicants, if you are interested in being the change email us at: with your CV and a covering letter.