Here Are Some Female Pioneers In Sports Everyone Should Know About
The sports spectrum has been graced by iconic names, with the likes of Maradona, Usain Bolt, and Tiger Woods being among the most popular in recent times. They’re always remembered for their outstanding performances in their respective sports.
We also have others who were the first to achieve something for the sport and are remembered for their accomplishments.
Here are some female ‘firsts’ in sports that you need to know.
Joan Whitney Payson – The First Woman to Establish An MLB Team
Payson’s involvement in the game was lifelong and self-motivated. Joan Whitney started buying New York Giants shares in the 1950s. In 1957, the owners began debating on moving the team west. She and M. Donald Grant argued that they should keep it in New York.
After the team was moved to California, Whitney Payson was approached to see if she could probably purchase a team to play in the third basketball league.
The plan didn’t go as expected, but later on, New York was offered the chance of getting an expansion team, and Whitney owned 80% of it.
Shareholders gathered at her apartment to name the team, to which they agreed upon Mets. After that, she dedicated her life to the team and would attend any match they had.
Players and fans loved her, especially when the team went on to become world champions in 1969. She successfully signed her favorite player, Willie Mays, to the Mets.
Nancy Lieberman – First Female Men’s Pro Basketball Team Coach
Lieberman has earned numerous accolades in her basketball career. She took home the Silver medal at the 1976 Olympics, which was the first time females played the competition in this sport.
She became the first female to go pro in a male league in 1986, then she was hired as coach of the Dallas Mavericks in 2009.