Sunday’s Super Bowl may have been between the Buccaneers and the Chiefs, but regardless of which team you were pulling for, fans everywhere were cheering on Sarah Thomas.
The 47-year-old mother of three made history on Sunday as the first female to referee a Super Bowl, and fans across the nation were here for it.
A breaking-the-glass-ceiling day for the first female referee to ref in the Super Bowl.
— Laura (@Bookworm) February 8, 2021
— Kristen Clarke (@KristenClarkeJD) February 8, 2021
When I look around the sidelines at games, I’m often only one of a handful of women.
Sarah Thomas continues to remind me there’s ALWAYS a place for me there.
Watching her make history from my own spot at the game today will be special. Thank you, Sarah. ❤️ pic.twitter.com/tZsFyYGZxs
— AJ Curry (@AJ_Curry) February 7, 2021
Sarah Thomas has won the #SuperBowl no matter who wins.
— Joy WE VOTED!! WEAR A MASK!! Reid 😷) (@JoyAnnReid) February 8, 2021
Even First Lady Dr. Jill Biden tuned in for Thomas’ big night.
— Jill Biden (@FLOTUS) February 7, 2021
Thomas, who was the first woman to be named a full-time official by the NFL in 2015, says it was never about shattering glass ceilings for her.
“I have been an official for almost 20 years,” she told reporters. “This hasn’t been an overnight sensation or a year… I am just out doing a job. I know it has meaning to a lot of people, and I am honored for that, but that’s not why I set out to do this, to break a gender barrier of any sorts. I just did it because I love officiating.”
While being a trailblazer for more women to have a place on the field may not have been her goal, Sarah is inspiring women and girls everywhere to pursue their passions, and defy society’s standards.
It’s a stark (and welcome) contrast from the tasteless example that was set for women and girls during last year’s Super Bowl (namely, J-Lo’s halftime strip tease) and we could not be more proud of the progress this year’s events exemplified.
Keep shattering glass ceilings, ladies. And thank you Sarah, for showing us how it’s done.