We live for an amazing Black Girl Magic story, and Maia Chaka has just given us another one!
According to NPR, Maia recently made history as the very first black woman to officiate an NFL game. The moment, which she said is one of her proudest, happened during Sunday’s game between the New York Jets and the Carolina Panthers.
“This historic moment to me is an honor and it’s a privilege that I’ve been chosen to represent women and women of color in the most popular sport in America, proving that I can defy the odds and overcome,” Chaka said in a video released by the NFL.
Maia Chaka is making history today.
She will be the first black woman to officiate an NFL game.
— NFL (@NFL) September 12, 2021
Chaka is the second woman hired as a full time NFL official, and the first black woman. She said she hopes to inspire and empower others to “step outside the box and to do something different.”
The NFL announced Maia was being hired back in March, to which she said she was honored.
“But this moment is bigger than a personal accomplishment,” she said. “It is an accomplishment for all women, my community, and my culture.”
NFL Executive Vice President of Football Operations Troy Vincent released an official statement after Maia as hired.
“Maia’s years of hard work, dedication and perseverance–including as part of the NFL Officiating Development Program–have earned her a position as an NFL official,” he stated. “As we celebrate Women’s History Month, Maia is a trailblazer as the first Black female official and inspires us toward normalizing women on the football field.”
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