Transgender golfer, Long Drivers face mediation

Lana Lawless, the transgender golfer who filed a discrimination suit last year against the Long Drivers of America, will meet with LDA owner Art Sellinger and a mediator on March 19 in U.S. District Court in San Francisco in an attempt to settle their dispute.

Sellinger told Golfweek that the outcome of the session would be binding. However, Lawless’ attorney, Christopher B. Dolan of San Francisco, disputed that, saying “the parties are going to go and try and see if they can resolve the case through the use of a mutual third party.”

Lawless, a police officer in Rialto, Calif., before undergoing gender-reassignment surgery in 2005, won the women’s division of the 2008 World Long Drive Championship. After she filed a discrimination lawsuit against the LPGA, players voted to drop the tour’s “female at birth” requirement.

The LDA, citing a lack of sponsorship interest, has not held a women’s event since 2008.

In a statement released after the LPGA rules change, the LDA said “it will follow the LPGA’s rule change and permit participation of transgendered women” in any future women’s events.

–James Achenbach and Julie Williams contributed

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