Gay dad Kirk Walker is the only openly gay coach in NCAA Division I athletics

He made Oregon State a national contender that reached the College World Series. And now Kirk Walker is believed to be the only openly gay coach in NCAA Division I athletics. Walker became a dad in 2006 after completing an open adoption he pursued with his long-time partner. In an interview with ESPN, Walker said it took about 6 months to complete the necessary paperwork and enter the adoption pool, just the first step in the long adoption process.

“I’m just being who I am, and I think who I am is a quality coach and a quality person, with my flaws and my own struggles. I am who I am, and it’s not making me better or worse because I come out as a gay parent now.”

The NY Times reports: Walker, 45, has found himself straddling generations in the gay community. Those who are older often kept their orientation to themselves. Those who are younger have grown up in a more welcoming environment, with laws to protect them.

“It’s a new age,” said Kelly Dyer, a senior Oregon State softball pitcher from Eugene, Ore. “Being gay is becoming more acceptable in our generation. It’s not like him being gay off the field has any effect on us on the field. It’s no big deal.”