Episode 18 | Part One: Tim Shriver, Chairman, Special Olympics

Episode Information

This week we’re taking a break from discussing affordable housing and shifting our focus to inclusivity. Our ChangeMaker is Tim Shriver, the long-time Chairman of Special Olympics, a best-selling author, a film producer and a founding force of the social and emotional learning movement. In part one, Tim shares what inspired him to join the world’s largest sports organization for children and adults with intellectual disabilities/physical disabilities, and what surprises people the most when they attend Special Olympics events and practices.

About Tim Shriver:
Tim Shriver is Chairman of Special Olympics, best-selling author, founding force of the social and emotional learning (SEL) movement, film producer, husband, and father. He has driven the largest expansion of Special Olympics, growing the movement to over five million athletes in over 190 countries. Today, Special Olympics athletes with intellectual disabilities are leading the creation of a more unified world through the joy of sport.

In 2018, he began asking new questions—How could SEL teaching skills like empathy and self-awareness help the U.S.? How could Special Olympics athletes provide a model for a divided world? Hundreds of young people, faith leaders, educators, philosophers, scientists, activists and political figures joined the conversation. Thus, they founded UNITE—the collective for common purpose—to bring people together to solve problems with ideas that bridge divides.

In 2020, as Covid-19 became a pandemic, suddenly humanity’s interdependence and need for connection—driving principles of UNITE and Special Olympics—have become the leading themes of human events.