William Gay is a former NFL cornerback who played for the Pittsburgh Steelers and most recently (2018) the New York Giants. Now that Gay has left the field, he has more time to devote to advocating against domestic violence, a subject matter that hits close to home.
Gay turned the pain he’s been carrying since 1992 into motivation, all in the name of his late mother, Carolyn Hall, who was killed by her boyfriend when he was just 8 years old. He’s been vocal about his personal journey in the past few years. Now he is partnering with former vice president Joe Biden in an initiative that will address these issues.
In 2018, The Biden Foundation named Gay to its Advisory Council, which focuses on ending sexual assault and violence against women, among other causes.
As an Advisory Council member, Gay joins a prominent group of leaders, experts and advocates who have been selected to serve as ambassadors for the Biden Foundation, guiding strategic partnerships to create societal change.
A longtime champion for victims of domestic violence, Gay believes in the Biden Foundation’s commitment to bringing together diverse voices who can uniquely speak to groups that will change the culture.
Gay’s crusade for ending domestic violence has all been in the name of his late mother.
“What drives me is my mother’s story, and this is a way, one, to keep her voice alive; two, just to help someone who is either in their situation or as a child in the same situation, give that encouragement that there are better things out there in the world. As a kid, there’s no like, ‘Oh, my God, my life is over because I don’t have parents.’ And for anyone who is in that violent situation or the sexual assault situation, there are people out there who would help. I don’t think my mom knew people that would help, because this was back in 1992. This is my way of allowing her story to stay alive, her to be alive, and also her story helps someone else.”
After Hall was killed, her boyfriend shot himself. Gay and his three siblings were raised by his grandmother Corine Hall.
Gay's other speaking topics include overcoming adversity and sports motivation for young athletes.
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