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Sheila C. Johnson, John Burke To Receive Awards At 2019 Salute To Women In Sports

Published September 16, 2019

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The Women's Sports Foundation is proud to announce the 2019 Billie Jean King Leadership Award recipient, Sheila C. Johnson, and our inaugural Champion for Equality Award honoree, John Burke. Both powerhouses in their respective industries and resilient advocates for women in sports, Johnson and Burke will accept their awards at the 2019 Salute to Women in Sports on October 16 in New York City.

Johnson, Salamander Hotels & Resorts founder and CEO, Monumental Sports & Entertainment Vice Chairman and Black Entertainment Television (BET) co-founder, becomes the 51st Billie Jean King Leadership Award honoree, joining the company of prestigious leaders like Gail K. Boudreaux, Dr. Condoleezza Rice and Dr. Dorothy Harris.

An embodiment of dedication, confidence and determination, Johnson is a true leader in all of her professional and philanthropic endeavors. Johnson sets an example and advances female equality by breaking down barriers. She is also the only African American woman to have a principal shareholder stake in three professional sports teams: the Washington Wizards, Washington Capitals and Washington Mystics, for which she also serves as President and Managing Partner; and also to own a Forbes 5 Star property, the Salamander Resort & Spa in Middleburg, VA.

The President of Trek Bicycle, Burke will become the first recipient of the prestigious Champion for Equality award, which recognizes an individual who has shown unwavering commitment to gender equality and to the advancement of girls and women in sports.

Burke is tirelessly dedicated to bridging the gender gap in cycling. By encouraging female participation with products and programming that address women's unique cycling needs, he promotes an environment of inclusion. Burke advocates for women on issues like equal pay in major competitions and the equitable treatment of all-female cycling teams. He also established an advocacy team that works to improve the relationship between female riders and retailers.

Celebrate Burke and Johnson, 2019 Wilma Rudolph Courage Award recipient Marta Vieira da Silva, and the accomplishments of women across myriad sports at WSF's Fall Gala on October 16th in New York City. The 2019 Sportswoman of the Year award recipients will also be unveiled during the evening.

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