Red Stars board of directors wants to facilitate sale of Arnim Whisler’s shares

The Red Stars board doesn’t intend to stop there.

SHARE Red Stars board of directors wants to facilitate sale of Arnim Whisler’s shares


The Red Stars board of directors wants to facilitate a sale of majority owner Arnim Whisler’s shares the team told the Sun-Times Wednesday.

Following an independent investigation into player abuse in women’s soccer conducted by former U.S. Deputy Attorney General Sally Yates and a subsequent report detailing the failings of the National Women’s Soccer League and certain team owners, including Whisler, he announced he would be removing himself from all operational control. Wednesday night the team released another statement announcing they had voted to remove Whisler as chairman of the board.

The Red Stars board — comprised of Dean Egerter, Abel Lezcano, Colleen Mares (advisory board co-chair), Kim Vender Moffat, Brian Walsh, Kevin Willer — doesn’t intend to stop there.

“The board wants to help facilitate a sale of Arnim’s shares in a timely process which is both prudent and when complete can lead Red Stars players, coaches and front office staff to a better future,” the team said via email.

Yates’ report exposes Whisler’s repeated dismissal of allegations of emotional and verbal abuse at the hands of Rory Dames dating back to 2014. The report included details of Dames calling Black players thugs and other players from Kentucky and Ohio trailer trash.

U.S. Women’s National Team star Christen Press reported concerns to then-U.S. Soccer Federation president Sunil Gulati and then-national team coach Jill Ellis about Dames in 2014. When those concerns were relayed to Whisler he claimed that national team players wanted the league to “shut down” and had an “axe to grind” with Dames.

According to the report Dames offered to resign and Whisler refused to accept his resignation.

Dames stayed with the Red Stars until Nov. 21 of last year when he was allowed by Whisler to resign at 11:54 p.m., hours before a Washington Post report was published detailing verbal and emotional abuse allegations against him. Three months later Whisler spoke to the media for the first time following the Post’s report. He claimed all prior concerns brought to him in the past were not on the level of abuse and that he let Dames resign in consideration of the players.

Whisler also stated the team conducted an internal workplace assessment with a third-party sports psychologist among other professionals and deemed the environment was safe to continue. Yates’ report detailed that 70% of the players interviewed (including most starting players) reported emotionally abusive behaviors and observed that many players failed to recognize certain behaviors as abusive because they were so pervasive in women’s soccer.

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