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Kristen Worley

Opening Keynote

Kristen Worley is a world class cyclist who challenged the highest levels of international sport on science, gender and human rights…and won.

Worley shines a spotlight on the need for policies to be backed by evidence and science, on the power of identity and self-worth, and the value of diversity and inclusion. She’s been tirelessly at the forefront of the struggles against sport gender rules for more than 16 years, and working as an educator and adviser regarding diversity education and inclusive policy in global sport.

She’s since founded the Human Diversity in Sport Foundation, sharing a vision of inclusive sport.

Earlier in her career, as a competitive cyclist, she wanted to compete at the Olympic level in the female category. However as a transitioned female elite athlete, she was forced to choose between not competing or competing and facing significant illness due to outdated, unscientific policies.

Kristen Worley was born and raised as classically male, but after realizing she had a medical condition in which a person’s sex and gender identity are not aligned, she underwent gender reassignment via surgery to become a transitioned woman.

She spent her teenage years trying to navigate a world she didn’t understand, seeking counselling at mental health clinics, attempting suicide, and being abandoned by family.  It was sport that finally saved her. Thought sport challenged her in ways she didn’t expect.

Through her incredibly challenging effort to become recognized by the International Olympic Committee, she faced invasive medical procedures, highly personal questioning, and challenges to her identity. She committed herself to bringing awareness and change to international heights by challenging sports’ definition of gender.

She’s now speaking in Canada and Worldwide to share her story. She’s been featured in Geneva at the Mega Sporting Events Platform for Human Rights, at the Integrity in Sport & Athletes Rights Law Conference and more.