Charles Barkley was named the first Honorary Chair of The World Games 2022 on July 8, 2020. A well-known basketball legend, the NBA MVP will represent The Games, generating excitement and community support for the global event.
A native of Leeds, Alabama, and standout basketball player at Auburn University, went on to have a 16-year, Hall of Fame career in the NBA. During his 16-year career, Barkley was named an NBA All-Star 11 times, captured two Olympic gold medals with Team USA and was named league MVP in 1993.
Randy Owen was named the second Honorary Chair on December 15, 2020. Owen will participate in several events at The World Games 2022, including the Opening and Closing Ceremonies.
A Dekalb County, Alabama native, Owen is known for his career as the lead singer of the Country Music Group of the Century (Recording Industry Association of America), Alabama, with 21 gold, platinum and multi-platinum albums, had 43 No. 1 singles, sold more than 75 million records, and earned more than 150 industry awards. Owen was inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame, Musician’s Hall of Fame, Alabama Music Hall of Fame, Alabama Business Hall of Fame, the Songwriters Hall of Fame, and received the prestigious Ellis Island Medal of Honor.
Vonetta Flowers became the third Honorary Chair on May 24, 2021. Flowers will participate in several events in 2022 as well as represent, support, and promote the message and mission of The World Games 2022.
A native of Birmingham, the Olympian is recognized for her standout athletic career. She was the first-ever African American to win a gold medal at the Winter Olympics competing as a brakewoman in the Two-Woman Bobsled event. In 2004, Flowers was crowned the International Bobsleigh and Skeleton Federation World Champion and in 2011 was inducted into the Alabama Sports Hall of Fame.
Noah Galloway became the fourth Honorary Chair on June 3, 2021. Galloway will participate in several events that support and promote The World Games 2022, particularly relating to the Disability Inclusion Initiative presented by Drummond Company Inc. and in partnership with Lakeshore Foundation.
A former United States Army Sergeant and native of Birmingham, Galloway truly embodies the spirit of The Games. After being severely injured from an IED attack leading to the loss of his left arm above the elbow and his left leg above the knee, Galloway returned to the United States to begin a career as a motivational speaker. He appeared on the cover of Men’s Health Magazine in 2014, earning the title of ‘The Ultimate Guy” and was also featured on reality competition TV shows, including Dancing with the Stars and Fox’s American Grit.
Cat Whitehill became the fifth Honorary Chair on June 17, 2021. Whitehill will participate in several events that support and promote The World Games 2022, including the Opening and Closing Ceremonies.
Whitehill was a member of U.S. Women’s National Team from 2000-2010, winning Olympic gold in 2004. In 134 appearances with the team, Whitehill scored 11 goals and played in two World Cups (2003 and 2007). Whitehill also played professional soccer in the United States from 2009-2015 as a member of the Washington Freedom, Atlanta Beat and Boston Breakers. She won four consecutive state championships, was a four-time All-State selection, a two-time Parade All-American, and a two-time Gatorade Soccer player of the Year in Alabama. She was inducted in the Alabama Sports Hall of Fame in 2019.
Alan Hunter became the sixth Honorary Chair on January 18, 2022. Hunter will participate in several events that support and promote The World Games 2022, including the Opening and Closing Ceremonies.
Hunter became a major part of American pop culture as an original MTV VJ in the 1980s. After returning to Birmingham, he and his brother Hugh formed film and television production company Hunter Films, which earned an Academy Award nomination for the short film “Johnny Flynton” in 2003. Currently, Hunter appears on SiriusXM Satellite Radio as a daily host for the “80s on 8” and “Classic Rewind” channels and the weekly “I Want My 80s” podcast.