Hi! You look familiar. Have we met before? If not, my name is Neal. My pronouns are he/him. You may have seen me either at your local gay watering hole, jogging around the city, or on a volleyball court in a park near you. I am so pleased to be featured here because I, like you, have something to say. So often and so easily, the wants and needs of those that need the most are drowned out. Being black and gay, what I needed most was a queer community to guide and uplift me so that I could finally fully realize my self-worth. I couldn’t find that in Williamstown, MA nor in New York City, but it found me in Madison. In the athletic community at large, I have found a group of people that hear me and encourage me to not mince words—to make myself heard, no matter the circumstance. As the athletic community has done for me, I too endeavor to amplify minority and LGBTQIA voices and to showcase and celebrate the presence and prominence of these bodies within the Madison community and beyond. I encourage you to speak your truth—now and always. Special shoutout to my volleyball family. Shine on, loves!
A 25-year exercise in spontaneity and experimentation transformed a neglected property into an eclectic eden.