As I read an article in the Independent recently on women in sport, I began thinking about my role models growing up. All of my female role models (that I can remember) came from the world of sport.
First and foremost there was Helen Rollason, who I first knew as the presenter of Newsround. She later became the first woman to present Grandstand. As a young hockey player I remember idolising Jane Sixsmith, who won bronze with Britain at the 1992 Olympics. There were other Olympians too; Sally Gunnell, Denise Lewis and Tanni Grey-Thompson. They are all strong and successful women who I am sure were the heroes of many more young girls.
Watching the Olympics this year I saw a new generation of role models. Not only female role models, but importantly for me, lesbian role models too. I was prompted to post these thoughts today after watching the following video of Megan Rapinoe accepting the LA Gay & Lesbian Center’s Board of Director’s Award. I wish that as a teenager I had lesbian role models like Megan. Like the national treasure, Clare Balding. Like the leader, Hope Powell. In addition to being strong and successful women like the role models I had, they are out, and proud, they are respected and loved.
Really, I just wrote this post so I could share the video. Watch it, and I hope it inspires something in you: