Sarah Thomas made history again February 2021, becoming the first woman to ever officiate at the Super Bowl. Thomas worked as a down judge, alongside Carl Cheffers crew.
Sarah Thomas has made history before when she became the first female official to officiate full time in the NFL in 2015. Sarah Thomas began officiating football in high school, but decided shortly after to pursue pharmaceutical studies. Thomas returned to football in 2007.
The NFL executive vice president, Troy Vincent, was the first to reach out, reading that “Her elite performance and commitment to excellence has earned her the right to officiate the Super Bowl. Congratulations to Sarah on this well-deserved honor.” Currently, Thomas is the only female officiate within the NFL. Rather slowly, more female coaches have also made their way to the sidelines for the playoff teams this year, which will be a first in the NFL’s chronicles.
Women fighting for their spot in the sport industry is nothing new; women are often overlooked when it comes to being taken seriously in sport. The challenging persistence of sexism, stereotypes, and public acceptance, has closed many opportunities for women in the past. These accomplishments are only the beginning of a challenging battle women still have to face. Nevertheless they hold powerful meanings for a brighter future for women in sport.