The date of June 23, 1972, has special significance for LSU Athletics Human Resources Manager Milan Stokes, though it occurred nearly three decades before she was born.
On that June day 50 years ago, the United States Congress passed Title IX, the civil rights law that prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex in any school or education program that receives federal funding. One of the law’s effects was the creation of opportunities where none had previously existed for women to compete in intercollegiate athletics.
Stokes, who played volleyball at LSU from 2016-19, is one of the multitude of female student-athletes who have benefited from the law’s passage.
“Title IX clearly paved the way for my volleyball career,” Stokes said. “Though it was signed 50 years ago, it gave my female coaches and mentors the opportunity to serve as representatives for women my age.
“From my perspective and where I began, I look to them as trailblazers, and in turn they’ve taught me how to uplift the girls in sports coming after me.”
As part of that commitment to influence the next generation, Stokes joined other LSU and Southern University Athletics staff members and student-athletes on June 18 in staging Geaux Day, an event designed to commemorate the incredible history of women’s athletics at both LSU and SU.