Athlete Leadership Programs

Athlete Leadership Programs (ALPs)

Athlete Leadership Programs prepare athletes to serve in meaningful leadership roles throughout the organization. Through ALPs, athletes are acting in leadership roles beyond the playing field or sports competition.

Opportunities for athletes through the ALPs program include: Board of Director member; Local/Area Committee member; Games Management; Global Messenger; Input Council; Coaching; Volunteer; Donor.

Upcoming ALPS Events



How to get Involved with ALPs/Global Messenger Program

  1. The athlete must have a valid medical application on file and currently be actively involved with Special Olympics as an athlete, coach or official.
  2. They must be able to attend workshops (1-2 per year) and speech presentations (1-2 per month) and have time to prepare speeches.
  3. Read over the ALPs Fact Sheet and complete and submit the ALPs Interest Form.
  4. You can follow up with Karen Milligan.

Global Messengers

Global Messengers are athlete ambassadors who help foster awareness and advocacy for the Special Olympics movement. Athletes must complete a two day training session in communications, speech writing and presentations along with their local speech mentor.

Global Messengers are called upon to give presentations about their involvement with Special Olympics to various groups throughout the state with the goal of increasing awareness about the program.

Interested athletes should have an identified person who is willing to be their Speech Coach and attend trainings and assist with preparation for speeches as needed. For more information download the Global Messenger Flyer.

If you are interested in having a Global Messenger speak at your event please right click and save link as to download and then fill out the Global Messenger Request Form.

Athlete Input Council

Input Councils provide a forum for athletes to report to other athletes and Program leaders on what is happening in their areas, voice their opinions about important issues and gain leadership training and experience. The councils allow more opportunities to become involved in all aspects of Special Olympics operation on a personal level.

Athlete Leadership Workshop

The Governance workshop prepares athletes to participate in Special Olympics programming and policy dialogue through membership on Boards or local committees. Training focuses on awareness and listening skills for not only athlete but also for volunteers, staff and family members with whom they interact.

For additional information about ALPs or if you are interested in having a Global Messenger speak at your event please contact the Director of ALPs and Families at 1-800-394-0562, 309-888-2551 by email to Karen Milligan or download and fill out the Global Messenger Request Form.