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Statement on the Hiring of Karina LeBlanc as Thorns GM

11/01/2021 3:26 PM | Wendy Broussard (Administrator)

A message from the Rose City Riveters Steering Committee:

The Rose City Riveters Steering Committee welcomes and celebrates Karina LeBlanc as the new General Manager of Portland Thorns FC. We expect that LeBlanc will be given the autonomy to be able to draft, hire, and manage the club as she sees fit. Her experience with the Club in 2013, her long career as a player, and her recent work as the Head of Women’s Football for CONCACAF give her a unique perspective and we are excited to have a dedicated GM for the Thorns. 

We are pleased with the positive progress indicated by LeBlanc’s appointment as the Thorns GM, especially that she will be involved in "helping to create, cultivate and manage the culture of Thorns FC."  However, the supporters’ demands of the club remain. We shared 8 demands a month ago and to date have received no direct communication from the club. We hope that LeBlanc’s appointment as GM represents an inclusive and far-reaching change, but without a view of what is happening at that table, we cannot say with confidence what progress this represents. We have asked for transparency, and our trust cannot be rebuilt without it. 

LeBlanc’s appointment does not change our position that Wilkinson should be removed from his position within the PTFC organization for his treatment of Mana Shim in 2014, as reported in the Athletic on 9/30. The fact that a leader in the club would seek to silence an out player and encourage them to not be their true self is a fireable offense in itself, regardless of what the ongoing investigations find.

We welcome and look forward to meeting with LeBlanc to discuss the club’s past and planning for the future.


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