When Natalie Randolph took charge of a high school American football team in Washington DC in 2010, newspapers hailed her historic appointment. While the media rightly lauded Randolph’s employment, she was far from being the first woman to coach the sport at a high school level. As this seminar will demonstrate, women have been coaching the sport for over a century on high school, college, and community teams despite the widespread lack of public knowledge about these women. As more and more women gain coaching positions within the National Football League, it seems an especially appropriate time to appreciate the women who came before them fully. This seminar will bring these ground-breaking women to the fore and reveal the positive way that many newspapers responded to them.
Katie Taylor is currently a doctoral student at the International Centre for Sports History and Culture at De Montfort University, focusing on the history of female American football players. She is also a teacher at Peter Symonds Sixth Form College in Winchester where she specialises in the socio-cultural aspects of sport. Katie is a qualified American football coach and previously managed the Great Britain men’s Flag Football Team.