CHICAGO (CBS) – A new kind of sports hall of fame will debut tonight in Chicago.
WBBM Newsradio’s John Waelti reports induction ceremonies begin at 5 p.m. for the new Gay & Lesbian Sports Hall of Fame, at its temporary home on Halsted Street in Lakeview.
It’s the first hall of fame – at least on a national scale – to recognize LGBT athletes and their supporters.
Executive Director Bill Gubrud said the hall initially won’t have its own building, so instead will be housed temporarily at the Center on Halsted, a renowned community center for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people.
“They’re going to have some wall space for us, until we raise enough funds to get our own building, where we can have memorabilia, historical artifacts; teach history in general, just to have a museum of our own,” he said.
The first inductees will include NBA center Jason Collins – who came out as the first openly gay NBA player – along with tennis greats Martina Navratilova and Billie Jean King; Olympic diver Greg Louganis; and former baseball umpire Dave Pallone, who was on the crew for the first night game at Wrigley Field.
Former Bears player Brendon Ayanbadejo also will be inducted for his outspoken support of gay rights and same-sex marriage.