New Athletic Director Kirsten Richter Makes Inclusion a Focal Point

Kirsten Richter, Latin’s first female athletic director, is looking to provide equal opportunities in sports, while expanding upon inclusion for all student-athletes during her first year. Ms. Richter hopes to use her extensive knowledge and experience as a coach to enhance Latin’s athletics program and make progress on its goals of equity and inclusion.
To be successful, Ms. Richter needs to have a strong support staff. When Ms. Richter was hired, she found just that at Latin. “Our department is full of dedicated and hard-working administrators and coaches. Many folks put in a lot of time to make the opportunities possible for our students,” Ms. Richter said. “I very much appreciate all of their efforts.”
Still, she will face challenges as athletic director, one of the hardest being equity. Currently, not all sports receive the same level of support. For instance, at the Homecoming games this year there was a low turnout at the varsity girls field hockey game compared to the varsity boys soccer game just before it.
When discussing equality in sports, senior Carmen Pastrana said, “I think it’s pretty evident that the Latin community is very male-supportive but doesn’t show up for the women’s teams in the same way. You can see it with the turnout at boys soccer games versus girls soccer, and same with lacrosse. I think there needs to be a greater show of support for the girls during their seasons instead of celebrating their success after it ends.”

Females in the sports industry are often overlooked. However, being a female in sports is undoubtedly something Ms. Richter takes pride in. In fact, she makes a concerted effort to make inclusion important in the Athletic Department.
“It is my hope that we are all committed to equity and inclusion in sport, no matter our gender. I am committed to doing my best to ensure that equity and inclusion are reflected and advanced through athletics at Latin,” Ms. Richter said. When asked how the Athletic Department plans to engage with DEI, she said, “Our Athletics Department is committed to doing our best to ensure that equity and inclusion are reflected and advanced through athletics in Latin.”
While funding has come up recently in the Athletic Department, specifically with unequal transportation between girls and boys teams, Ms. Richter explained this was not the case. “All of our teams receive the same level of support, and the same transportation to practices and games,” she said.
Another misconception that is often questioned in sports within or outside of Latin is the number of sports teams split between girls and boys. Latin has provided equal opportunities. In fact, Ms. Richter said, “At this time, there are no immediate plans to add any sports, boys’ or girls’. We currently offer 12 girls programs and 11 boys programs in the Upper School.”
All student-athletes look to have a bright future with strong leadership in the Athletic Department. Ms. Richter said, “We want to continue to add value to the student experience and create meaningful opportunities for students to participate and compete in the sports they love.”