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NFL’s Maia Chaka makes history as the first black woman to officiate an NFL game
“This historic moment is an honor for me and it is a privilege to have been chosen to represent women and women of color in America’s most popular sport,” said Chaka in a video tweeted by the NFL.
Officiating Sunday in the New York Jets at the Carolina Panthers in Charlotte, North Carolina, Chaka is the third official female on the NFL field, joining Sarah Thomas, the first permanent female playing official, and Shannon Eastin, who has was the first woman to be an officer. an NFL game.

Chaka, a physical education and health teacher, spent time as a referee in the NCAA Pac-12 Conference and the USA Conference, as well as the short-lived Alliance of American Football in 2019.

She entered the NFL Officials Development Program in 2014, a program designed to give top referees in the college ranks “exposure to the game experiences that NFL officials face, to determine if they have the ability to be successful, ”according to the NFL.

The NFL announced in March that it was adding Chaka to its roster of playing officials for 2021.

“I hope it just inspires someone else and allows them to think outside the box and do something different,” Chaka said in the video.

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