Winston & Strawn Prevails, Securing Nonbinary Runner’s Therapeutic Use Exemption From USADA

Nov 17, 2023

Winston & Strawn LLP has prevailed on behalf of nonbinary runner Cal Calamia in securing United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) approval of a Therapeutic Use Exemption (TUE) for Calamia’s use of testosterone in male, nonbinary, and open running categories. The USADA issued the approval on October 5, 2023.

Calamia, who uses both “he” and “they” pronouns, has been taking testosterone as part of his gender transition after having been assigned female at birth. Winston has been representing Calamia on a pro bono basis during the USADA review of his TUE application, without any formal appearance before USADA.

“Winston is proud to have represented and supported Calamia through the USADA TUE application, which has resulted in a landmark decision, which The Washington Post reported as “the first such exemption to compete in the nonbinary category in running[,] and [that] is viewed as a victory for nonbinary and trans athletes, some of whom receive gender-affirming hormone treatments that have traditionally been banned from the sport.” 

Calamia has long been an advocate for fair treatment for nonbinary and trans runners. In the Washington Post article, he said, “‘This approval represents a turning point in conversations about trans athletes. … To have this approval means I’m allowed to be part of this conversation without being sidelined. … I recognize I am an activist, but I think it’s important for people to know this activism was born out of desire to be who I am and do what I love.’”

Calamia was represented by Winston litigation partner David Feher (New York), co-chair of the firm’s sports litigation practice; litigation partner Diana Leiden (Los Angeles); and litigation associate Whitney Williams (Los Angeles).

Articles in Current Issue