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Just a day after the NBA made referee history, the NFL has doubled down.

Currently, in the offseason, tons of shocking moves have occurred, like JJ Watt leaving the Houston Texans and Russell Wilson being on the trading block, but now a woman is trailblazing her way onto the turf. While she won’t be in the huddle, Maia Chaka has become the first Black woman named to the NFL’s officiating as she was added to the roster of game officials for the 2021 season.

“I am honored to be selected as an NFL official,” Chaka said in a statement. “But this moment is bigger than a personal accomplishment. It is an accomplishment for all women, my community, and my culture.”

Sports are ingrained in Chaka; she was a health and physical education teacher in Virginia Beach before graduating to refereeing in the college ranks. In 2014 she jumped to the pros as part of the league’s Officiating Development Program, which works to find talented refs in the college game who’d flourish in the NFL.

Troy Vincent, the former cornerback and current NFL executive vice president of football operations, is happy more women are joining the NFL ranks, even more so during Women’s History Month.

“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,” Vincent said. “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.”

Maia Chaka Makes History As The First Black Woman Referee To Join NFL  was originally published on cassiuslife.com

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