H&R Block Champions Equity in College Sports with $1 Million Commitment to ‘A Fair Shot’
America’s most trusted tax prep company to provide numerous female college athletes with sponsorship support, tax prep assistance
Basketball players Caitlin Clark and Zia Cooke are first recipients of H&R Block support – just another way Block provides help
KANSAS CITY, Mo. (March 1, 2022) – During the first tax season after the NCAA began allowing college athletes to profit from their name, image, and likeness (NIL), H&R Block (NYSE: HRB) today announced plans to provide $1 million in sponsorships and support for female college athletes, who continue to receive fewer sponsorship opportunities and lower compensation than their male peers. The company is also providing tax preparation services to help sponsored athletes manage key tax decisions that result from this new income.
In addition to its $1 million commitment, H&R Block will amplify the voices of female student athletes regarding the continued need for equity in college sports. As part of its “A Fair Shot” program, which seeks to level the playing field for male and female college athletes, H&R Block’s college athlete partners will help elevate awareness of the inequities in college athletics by engaging in a service-focused action, such as mentoring or volunteering with an organization supporting equity in women’s sports.
“When we saw the disparity already growing in college NIL sponsorships, we knew we had to help female college athletes get a fair shot. This commitment draws from our purpose to provide help and inspire confidence in our clients and communities everywhere,” said Jeff Jones, president and CEO of H&R Block. “When we invest in female college athletes, we are helping to create a positive impact in society that’s good for all of us.”
A Fair Shot for Female College Athlete Partners
Sophomore Caitlin Clark, a guard on the University of Iowa’s women’s basketball team, and junior Zia Cooke, a guard on the University of South Carolina’s women’s basketball team, are receiving the first two sponsorships from H&R Block.
Clark, a 2021 consensus All-American, is ranked No. 1 in points per game and recently became the first player in Division 1 basketball history, women’s or men’s, to record back-to-back triple-doubles while scoring 30 or more points in both games. She also recently became the fastest player in Big Ten history to score 1,000 points in 40 games or fewer. Last year, Cooke was ranked No. 14 of the Top 25 women’s college basketball players in the country by ESPN, and she is expected to continue climbing the list during her junior year. Both women are leaders in supporting other women on and off the court.
“It’s nice to have a brand as well-known and trusted as H&R Block supporting me and other female student athletes,” Clark said. “With tax help from H&R Block, I am confident in navigating changing circumstances. Together with H&R Block, we are starting a ripple effect by bringing greater awareness to women in sports. Thanks, H&R Block, for your commitment to giving women in sports a fair shot and helping them be financially successful.”
“Being a student athlete, especially with the new NIL rules, means juggling a lot for the best reasons, and H&R Block is helping us make the most of every opportunity,” Cooke said. “H&R Block is standing up for female student athletes by not only supporting us financially but making sure we’re set up for long-term success in understanding the tax implications of the money we’re earning from our name, image, and likeness.”
In addition to Clark and Cooke, H&R Block will partner with female college athletes across several other sports and schools, seeking to become a broader catalyst for giving women a fair shot.
More information on H&R Block’s commitment to equity in women’s college sports is available at hrblock.com/afairshot, along with an online resource hub of information for all college athletes navigating NIL tax implications.
About H&R Block
H&R Block, Inc. (NYSE: HRB) provides help and inspires confidence in its clients and communities everywhere through global tax preparation services, financial products, and small-business solutions. The company blends digital innovation with human expertise and care as it helps people get the best outcome at tax time and also be better with money using its mobile banking app, Spruce. Through Block Advisors and Wave, the company helps small-business owners thrive with innovative products like Wave Money, a small-business banking and bookkeeping solution, and the only business bank account to manage bookkeeping automatically. For more information, visit H&R Block News or follow @HRBlockNews on Twitter.