Collin Martin

Professional soccer player, active member of the USL Championship, committed to LGBTQ+ rights

"Embracing who you are brings the game forward"

Who is he? What does he do?

Collin Martin, born on November 9, 1994, is an American professional footballer who currently plays as a midfielder for North Carolina FC in the USL Championship.

His career includes stints with Major League Soccer teams such as D.C. United and Minnesota United FC, as well as playing for Richmond Kickers and Hartford Athletic in the United Soccer League.

Collin is known for coming out as gay in June 2018, making him the only openly gay man in a major American sports league at the time.

What is his personal experience of a life crisis and how did he overcome it?

Collin came out publicly as gay in 2018 during Pride month and shared his feelings in an emotional letter on Twitter. He emphasized how overwhelming it was for him to be able to be himself openly and thanked the fans and the league for their support that made it possible for him to be where he is today.  Collin hopes to be a role model for those who have no one else to encourage them.

In 2020, he himself showed great courage when his team, San Diego Loyal, walked out of a game after suffering homophobic abuse. This action, led by manager Landon Donovan, was widely recognized as a strong stand against homophobia in sport and shows the importance of taking a stand against discrimination.

What is his inspiration?

Collin feels comfortable in the stadium even though he is aware of the existing negativity towards homosexuality in professional soccer. He emphasizes that there need to be more gay footballers and hopes that they can find their place in society and in sport. He has come out publicly to be a role model and to help others who are unsure of their sexuality.

Where is his favorite place in this world and why? What does he believe in?

Collin enjoys the beach feeling and water sports, which often draws him to the CRSSD Festival in San Diego. This festival is a significant part of his social life, combining music and community by the water.

What was a special moment in his life and what did he experience with his partner?

A defining moment in Collin’s life was when his boyfriend encouraged him to come out to his teammates by bringing him to a team dinner as his date. This gesture made Collin feel comfortable and accepted in his team. This experience underlines how important support in a personal circle can be for someone in his situation.

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